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X> Sea Sc^o>lI® 

Revised EciiiJ.«3n 

F> E rs( ti U I r~i BOOKS 

Table of Contents 



Title Page 

Copyright Page 




A. The Rules 

The Community Rule - (IQS. 4Q255-64. 4Q280. 286-7. 4Q502. 5QII. 

Community Rule manuscripts from Cave 4 

Entry into the Covenant - (4Q275) 

Four Classes of the Community - (4Q279) 

The Damascus Document - (CD. 4Q265-73. 5Q12. 6Q15) 

Damascus Document manuscripts from Cave 4 

The Messianic Rule - (1QSa=1Q28a) 

The War Scroll - (IQM. 1Q33. 4Q491-7. 4Q471) 

The War Scroll from Cave 4 - (4Q491 . 493) 

TheBookofWar-(4Q285. 11Q14) 

The Temple Scroll - (11QT=11Q19-21 . 4Q365a. 4Q524) 

MMT (Miqsat Ma'ase Ha- Torah) - Some Observances of the Law - 


The Wicked and the Holy - (4Q1 8 1) 
4QHalakhah B - (4Q264a) 
4QTohorot (Purities) A - (4Q274) 

4QTohorot B-B - (40276-7) 
4Q Harvesting - (4Q284a) 

The Master's Exhortation to the Sons of Dawn - (40298) 
4Q IVIen Who Err -(40306) 
Register of Rebul<es - (4Q477) 
Remonstrances (before Conversion?) - (4Q471 ) 

B. Hymns and Poems 

The Thanl<sqivinq Hymns - (IQH. IQ36. 4Q427-32) 
Hymnic Fragment - (4Q433a) 
Apocryphal Psalms (I) - (IIQPs=IIQ5.4Q88) 
Apocryphal Psalms (II) - (4Q88) 
Apocryphal Psalms (III) - (11QapPs=11Q11) 
Non-canonical Psalms - (4Q380-81 ) 
Lamentations - (4Q]179.4Q501) 

Songs for the Holocaust of the Sabbath - (40400^07. 11 Q1 7. 
Masada 1039-200) 

Poetic Fragments on Jerusalem and 'King' Jonathan - (4Q448 ) 
Hymn of Glorification A and B - (4Q491 . fr. 1 1— 4Q471 b) 

C. Calendars. Liturgies and Prayers 

Calendars of Priestly Courses - (4Q320-30. 337) 
Calendrical Document C - (4Q326) 
Calendrical Document D - (4Q394 1-2) 
Calendric Signs (Otot) - (4Q319) 

'Horoscopes' or Astrological Physiognomies - (4Q186. 4Q534 

Phases of the Moon - (4Q31 7) 

A Zodiacal Calendar with a Brontologion - (4Q318) 

Order of Divine Office - (4Q334) 

The Words of the Heavenly Lights - (4Q504— 6) 
Liturgical Prayer - (1Q 34 and 34 bis) 
Prayers for Festivals - (4Q 507-9) 
Daily Prayers -(4Q 503) 

Prayer or Hymn Celebrating the Morning and the Evening - (4Q 408) 

Blessings - (1QSb=1Q28b) 

Benedictions - (4Q 280. 286-90) 

Confession Ritual - (4Q393) 

Purification Ritual A - (4Q 512) 

Purification Ritual B - (4Q4]14) 

A Liturgical Work - (4Q 392-3) 

D. Historical and Apocalyptic Works 

Apocalyptic Chronology or Apocryphal Weeks - (4Q 247) 
Historical Text A - (4Q248) 

Historical Texts C-E (formerly Mishmarot C) - 4Q331 -3) 
Historical Text F - (4Q468e) 

The Triumph of Righteousness or Mysteries - (1 Q27. 4Q299-301 1 ) 
Time of Righteousness - (4Q 215a) 
The Renewed Earth - (4Q 475) 
A Messianic Apocalypse - (4Q521 ) 

E. Wisdom Literature 

The Seductress - (4Q184) 

Exhortation to Seek Wisdom - (4Q185) 

A Parable of Warning - (4Q302) 

Sapiential Didactic Work A - (4Q412) 

A Sapiential Work (i) - (4Q413) 

A Sapiential Work (ii) - (4Q415-18. 423. 1Q26) 

A Sapiential Work (ill): Ways of Righteousness - (4Q420-21 ) 

A Sapiential Work Instruction-like Composition - (4Q424) 

The Two Ways - (4Q473) 

Bless. My Soul - (Barki nafshi. 4Q434-438) 

A Leader's Lament - (4Q439) 

Fight against Evil Spirits - (4Q444) 

Songs of the Sage - (4Q51 0-1 1 ) 

Beatitudes - (4Q525) 

F. Bible Interpretation 

Aramaic Bible Translations - (Targums^ 
The Targum of Job - (11 Q1 0.4Q1 57) 
The Targum of Leviticus 

G. Biblically Based Apocryphal Works 

Jubilees - (4Q216-28. 1Q17-18. 2Q19-20. 3Q5. 4Q482(?). 1 1Q12) 

The Prayer of Enosh and Enoch - (4Q369) 

The Book of Enoch - (4Q201-2. 204-12) 

The Book of Giants - (1Q23-4. 2Q26. 4Q203. 530-33. 6Q8) 

An Admonition Associated with the Flood - (4Q370. 4Q1 85) 

The Ages of the Creation - (4Q1 80) 

TheBookof Noah-(1Q19. 1Q19 bis. 4Q534-6. 6Q8.19) 

Words of the Archangel Michael - (4Q529. 6Q23) 

The Testament of Levi (i) - (4Q213-1 14. 1Q21) 

Testaments of the Patriarchs: the Testament of Levi or Testament of 

Jacob - ... 

The Testament of Judah and Joseph - (4Q538-9) 
The Testament of Naphtali - (4Q21 5) 

Narrative and Poetic Composition (formerly 'A Joseph Apocryphon') - 

The Testament of Qahat - (4Q542) 
The Testament of Amram - (4Q543-9) 
The Words of Moses - (1 Q22 ) 

Sermon on the Exodus and the Conquest of Canaan - (4Q374) 

A Moses Apocryphon - (4Q375) 

A Moses Apocryphon - (4Q376. 1Q29) 

A Moses Apocryphon - (4Q408) 

Apocryphal Pentateuch B (formerly 'A Moses Apocryphon) - (4Q377) 

A Moses (or David) Apocryphon - (4Q373. 2Q22) 

Prophecy of Joshua - (4Q522. 5Q9) 

A Joshua Apocryphon (i) or Psalms of Joshua - (4Q378 — 9) 

A Joshua Apocryphon (ID (Masada 1039— 211) 

The Samuel Apocryphon - (4Q160) 

A Paraphrase on Kings - (4Q382) 

An Elisha Apocryphon - (4Q481 ) 

A Zedekiah Apocryphon - (4Q470) 

A Historico-theoloqical Narrative based on Genesis and Exodus - 
(4Q462— 4) 
Tobit-(4Q196— 200 

Apocryphon of Jeremiah - (4Q383. 385a. 387. 387a. 388a. 389—90) 

The New Jerusalem -(4Q554-5.5Q1 5. 1Q32. 2Q24. 4Q232. 1 1Q18) 

Pseudo-Ezekiel - (4Q385. 386. 385b. 388. 385c) 

The Prayer of Nabonidus - (4Q242) 

Para-Danielic Writings - (4Q243-5) 

The Four Kingdoms - (4Q552-3) 

An Aramaic Apocalypse - (4Q246) 

Proto-Esther (?) - (4Q550) 

List of False Prophets - (4Q339) 

Listof Netinim-(4Q340) 

H. Miscellanea 

The Copper Scroll - (3Q15) 

Cryptic Texts - (4Q249. 250. 313) 

Two Qumran Ostraca 
I. Appendix 

Index of QumranTexts 

Major Editions of Qumran Manuscripts 

General Biblioarapiiv 

General Index 



Geza Vermes was bom in Hungary in 1924. l-ie studied in Budapest 
and in Louvain, where lie read Oriental history and languages and in 
1953 obtained a doctorate in theology with a dissertation on the 
historical framework of the Dead Sea Scrolls. From 1957 to 1991 he 
taught in England at the universities of Newcastle upon Tyne (1 957-65) 
and Oxford (1965 — 91). He is now Professor Emeritus of Jewish 
Studies and Emeritus Fellow of Wolfson College, but continues to 
teach at the Oriental Institute in Oxford. He has edited the Journal of 
Jewsh Studies since 1971, and since 1991 he has been director of 
the Oxford Forum for Qumran Research at the Oxford Centre for 
Hebrew and Jewish Studies. Professor Vermes is a Fellow of the 
British Academy and of the EuropeanAcademy of Arts, Sciences and 
Humanities. He is the holder of an Oxford D.Litt. and of honorary 
doctorates from the universities of Edinburgh, Durham and Sheffield. 
His first article on the Dead Sea Scrolls appeared in 1949 and his first 
book, Les manuschts du desert de Juda,\n 1953. It was translated 
into English in 1956 as Discovery in the Judean Desert. He is also the 
author ofScripture and Tradition in Judaism (1961, 1973, 1983); 
Jesus the Jew (1973, 1976, 1981, 1983); The Dead Sea Scrolls: 
Qumran in Perspective (1977, 1981, 1982, 1994); Jesus and the 
World ofJudaism (1983, 1984); The Religion ofJesusthe Jeiv(1993); 
and (with Martin Goodman) The Essenes According to the Classical 
Sources (1989); (with Philip Alexander) Discoveries in the Judaean 
Desert XXVI (1998) and (also with Philip Alexander) XXXW (2000); 
An Introduction to the Complete Dead Sea Scrolls (1999, 2000); The 
Dead Sea Scrolls (The Folio Society, 2000); The Changing Faces of 
Jesus (2000); The Authentic Gospel of Jesus (2003) and Jesus in his 
Jewsh Context (2003). He played a leading part in the rewriting of 
Emil Schiirer's classic work The History of the Jewsh People in the 
Age of Jesus Christ (1973-87). His autobiography, Prowdenf/a/ 

Acxiidents (1998), contains a vivid personal account of a life-long 
involvement with the Dead Sea Scrolls. 


The Complete 
Dead Sea Scrolls 
in English 

Revised Edition 




Published bythe Penguin Group 
Penguin Bool<s Ltd, 80 Strand, London V\C2R ORL, England 
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Penguin Books Ltd, Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London V\C2R ORL, England 

Rrst published in Pelican Books 1962 
Reprinted with revisions 1965, 1968 
Fourth edition published in Penguin Books 1995 
Complete edition published byAlen Lane The Penguin Press 1997 
Published in Penguin Books 1998 
Revised edition 2004 

Copyright©G.Vennes, 1962, 1965, 1968, 1975, 1987. 1995, 1997, 2004 
Al rights reserwd 

The extracts on pp. 95 and 247 are reproduced by kind permission 
of the Israel Museum, Jerusalem; the extracts on pp. 345, 401,415, 

459 and 537 are reproduced by kind permission of the Israel 
Antiquities Authority p. 581 : a cut segment from 77?© Copper Scroll 
from The Dead Sea Scrolls: A Reappraisal by John Alegro (Penguin 

Maps drawn by Nigel Andrews 

The moral right of the author has been asserted 

elSBN; 978-1-101-16059-6 

Mixed SoiHti 

Fsc ;w:-i.:-Mr. 

Penguin Bool<s is committed to a sustainable future for our business, our 
readers and our planet. 
The book in yDur hands is made from paper certified bythe Forest Stewardship 

ForM and I with love and in loving memory ofP 


In the spring of 1 947 a young Arab shepherd climbed into a cave in the 
Judaean desert and stumbled on the first Dead Sea Scrolls. For those 
of us who lived through the Qumran story from the beginning, the 
realization that all this happened half a century ago brings with it a 
melancholy feeling. The Scrolls are no longer a /iscenf discovery as we 
used to refer to them, but over the years they have grown in 
significance and now the golden jubilee of the first manuscript find calls 
for celebration with joy and satisfaction. Following the 'revolution' 
which 'liberated' all the manuscripts in 1991 - until that moment a large 
portion of them was kept away from the public gaze - every interested 
person gained free access to the entire Qumran library. I eagerly 
seized the chance and set out to explore the whole collection. Today, 
after four and a half years of intense study I feel confident that I can 
present the complete canvas of the Dead Sea Scrolls and disclose to 
the many interested readers the message of these ancient 
manuscripts about ancient Judaism and to a more limited extent about 
early Christianity. 

In its successive editions this book has erKleavoured to serve a dual 
audience of scholars and educated lay people. Over the years it has 
grown in size - it contained only 255 pages in 1962 - and I trust also in 
its grasp of the subject. While this translation of tlie non-biblical Scrolls 
does not claim to cover every fragmerrt retrieved from the caves, it is 
complete in one sense: it offers in a readable form all the texts 
sufficiently well preserved to be understandable in English. In plain 
words, meaningless scraps or badly damaged manuscript sections 
are not inflicted on the reader. Those who wish to survey texts 
consisting only of broken lines, or of single letters and half-letters, 
should turn to the official series Discoveries in the Judaean Desert, in 
which every surviving detail is put on record. 

In addition to the English rendering of the Hebrew and Aramaic texts 
found in the eleven Qumran caves, two inscribed potsherds (ostraca) 

retrieved from the Qumran site and two Qumran-type documents 
discovered in the fortress of iVIasada, and brief introductory notes to 
each text, this volume aiso provides an up-to-date general introduction, 
outlining the history of fifty years of Scroll research and sketching the 
organization, history and religious message of the Qumran 
Community A Scroll catalogue, an essential bibliography and an index 
of Qumran texts are appended to facilitate further study and research. 

Map 1 : The area surrounding the Dead Sea, showing Qumran 

Map 2: The Caves of Qumran 
Has the greatly increased source material substarrtiaiiy altered our 
perception of the writings found at Qumran? I do not think so. Nuances 
and emphases have changed, but additional information has mainly 
helped to fill in gaps and clarify obscurities; it has not undermined our 
earlier conceptions regarding the Community and Its ideas. We had 
the exceptionally good fortune tfiat all but one of the major non-biblical 
Scrolls were published at the start, between 1950 and 1956: the 
Habakkuk Commentary (1950), the Community Rule (1951), the War 
Scroll and the Thanksgiving Hymns (1954/5) and the best-preserved 
columns of the Genesis Apocryphon (1 956). Even the Temple Scroll, 
which had remained concealed until 1967 In a Bata shoebox by an 
antique dealer, was edited ten years later. The large Scrolls have 
served as foundation and pillars, and the thousands of fragments as 
building stones, with which the unique shrine of Jewish religion and 
culture that is Qumran is progressively restored to its ancient 

Finally it is a most pleasant duty to express my warmest thanks to 
friends and colleagues who helped to make this book less imperfect 
than it might otherwise have been. First and foremost, I wish publicly to 
convey my gratitude to Professor Emanuel Tov, editor-in-chief of the 
Dead Sea Scrolls Publication Project, for his generosity in answering 
queries and assisting in every possible way My very special thanks 
are due also to Professor Joseph M. Baumgarten, who allowed me to 
consult his edition of the Damascus Document fragments from Cave 4 
prior to their publication in DJD, and to my former pupil, Dr Jonathan 
G. Campbell, who did not shirk the onerous task of reading through 
and commenting on the rather bulky printout of this volume. 

Preface to the Penguin Classics edition 

Since the end of 1996, when the text oiThe Complete Dead Sea 
Scrolls in English was sent to the printers, eighteen further tomes of 
manuscript material have appeared in the series Discoveries in the 
Judaean Desert (DJDJ.Today, in January 2003, only three more 
volumes, two biblical and one non-biblical, still await publication before 
the 39-volume venture, begun in 1955 with DJD I, reaches its fulfilment. 

When reviewing The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in 1997, John J. 
Collins wittily predicted: 'It is not inconceivable that a more complete 
edition may appear a few years hence.' Yet even today's revised and 
updated version remains in some way incomplete. It is without the 
scriptural texts found in the caves, which I never intended to include. 
Luckily these are now available in The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible issued 
by Martin Abegg, Peter Flint and Eugene Ulrich (Harper San 
Francisco, 1 999). Neither have I attempted at any stage to present the 
English translation of every scrap devoid of significance (small, 
unconnected manuscript remains, broken sentences, single words, 
half-words or letters). However, I can state even more confidently than I 
did seven years ago that the reader wiii find in this volume all that is 
meaningful and interesting in the non-biblical Dead Sea Scrolls. 

The introductory chapters and the bibliographies have also been 
brought up to date so that account is taken in them of all fresh material 
as well as of the continuous advance of Qumran research. 

The publishers have decided to provide this book with a new niche: 
forty-one years after its first appearance in 1962 in the Pelican series, 
it will have its home from now on next to the great works of world 
literature in the Penguin Classics library. 

I feel deeply honoured. 

Oxford, January 2003 


BCB 197 Jmbea became a province of the Sdeodd Empire 

nded Ae Syrian successors of ALEXANDen thb 

187-175 SELEUCUS IV. Beginninj; of I It- lltnistit- infiltration, 

rcsi-itcd l>y the Zadokiic Hi^h I'ru-it (in i as 111. 
175-164 ANTiocHus IV (epipiianes). ONiAS (leposed and 

nplflCMl bjrlua HdliDopliils hioiliujAMif> 
17s JASON opoled Am ottce im fivour of hshbuub, 

HelltHiihH lH|b Priest from tyt to itfs sci. 

I St the insdgadon of mbhilaus. 

169 ANTIOOHVS M bgr mbmbuvs pn&ned and phin- 

dered die 'Rmple ofjcniaalem. 
itfS AN I in< iit-s thwarted 1^ the Romans in his second 

t;iiii[t.iit;ii :ii;;iinsi Kgypt. 

1^7 Persecution of those Jews vho opposed die unifi- 

qnim of Ac S tI m cM Bo^^bo o> dw bids of Qrodk 
culture and rd^km. Offidal abolition of Jewish rel- 
igion and practice under threat of death. The Temple 
transformed into a sanctuary of Olympian /.cu.s. 

166 Risini: of the Maocabecs supported by all the trad- 

ition, il p.irties UDder die leadership of jddas 


164 IhKe. rum,*tSM^ of tfat lkBfk» siflt hdd hf 


162-150 DEMETRii-s t. MENELAUS executed bv the Syrians. 

ALCiMus appointed High Priest by the Idng. 

161 JUDAS killed in battle. Jonathan assumed leader- 

ship of die rdwb (itf 1-152 

l6o ALCIMVSi the han HeUenizing High Priest, died of a 

smAc End tjfSytiui military intervention. 

152-145 ALBXAHim BALAS usuqKd the Sclcucid throne and 

■pp OhHedlONATHAN High Pricst(i52-i4i/' ii<:n). 

145-142 ANTIOCHUS VI, son of ALEXANDER, raised to die 

dmme hy twrnum, fab fidnrliffBiMnliOHMnuH 
named fowemor of Syria, simon, his broAn^ made 

military governor of the P:i1cstini;in littond. 
143 JONATHAN arrcstcii liy iKvi*no\. 

143/2-135/4 siHON High PHesi and ethnarch. 
14s JONATHAN executed in prison. 

140 Simon's titles oonfiimed as hereditary. Foundation 

ofdwMMCabMIBtOr Masmonacan, d>-n3st>. 
135/4 tiuim BonlefBd by his son-in-bw. 

135/4-104 JOBH BTtCANVS I High Priest and ethnarch. 

Oppoaed by die Pharisees. 
104-103 AKiSTOBVurs I High Priesc and king. 

103-76 ALBXAMDn JANNAXVS Hl^ PrieS^ Uog^ SBd 0C»- 

queroT. Resisted by the Pharisees. 

71S-67 Ai,F.XANi>RA. widow of .1 AN N A Kv s. quccti. Kricnd of 

the Pharistrfs. iiyrcam s ii High Pritvt. 

67 HVBCANUS 11 lung and High Priest. Deposed by his 

brother AEirroBVLVs. 

67-63 AUSTOSVLOS II long and High Priest Taken 

prisoner by poupcv in 63 bce after the fatt of 
Jferusalem. Judaea became a Roman province. 

63-40 HvacANUs 11 reinstated as High Priest without the 

royal tide. 

40-37 ANTiGONus, son of AaisTOBULus II, occupied the 

thfooe and poBtificiH iridi Pai'ihiiii au^pciti 
mracAN vs maimed aod adkd. 

37-4 iiF.RoD THF GRFAT. Eod of Ibmoaaean dputitf. 

iivRi \Ni s cxfcinfd in 30»<a. 

27-14 CI AUGUSTUS emperor. 

6 ■« (?) Knh of juvs op hazarbth. 

4 bcbhS OB archblavs ethnarch of Judaea and Samaria. 

14^37 CB TIBERIUS emperor. 

26-jfi PONTIUS PILATE prefect of Judaea. 

30^) CnidfixkHiof JE5VS. 

tf6-7o Rnc JewiA Vfm miSng iriA the tapnre of 

Jennalem «d the Jciu uuiu u of ifae Tfanple by 


73/74 l-;ill<.t"\his.uia. 

IJ2-5 Second unsuccessful Jewish War against Rome led 


/. Introduction 

On the western shore of the Dead Sea, about eight miles south of 
Jericho, lies a complex of ruins known as Khirbet Qumran. It occupies 
one of the lowest parts of the earth, on the fringe of the hot and arid 
wastes of the Wilderness of Judaea, and is today, apart from 
occasional invasions by coachloads of tourists, lifeless, silent and 
empty But from that place, members of an ancient Jewish religious 
community whose centre it was, hurried out one day and in secrecy 
climbed the nearby cliffs in order to hide away in eleven caves their 
precious scrolls. No one came back to retrieve them, and there they 
remained undisturbed for almost 2,000 years. 

The account of the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, as the 
manuscripts are inaccurately designated, and of the half a century of 
intense research that followed, is in itself a fascinating as well as an 
exasperating story. It has been told many a time, but this fiftieth 
anniversary of the first Scroll find excuses, and even demands, yet 
another rehearsal.l 


1. 1947-1967 

News of an extraordinary discovery of seven ancient Hebrew and 
Aramaic manuscripts began to spread in 1948 from Israeli and 
American sources.^ The original chance find by a young Bedouin 
shepherd, Muhammad edh-Dhib, occurred during the last months of 
the British mandate in Palestine in the spring or summer of 1947, 
unless it was slightly eariier, in the winter of 1946.^ In 1949, the cave 

where the scrolls lay hidden was Identified, thanks to the efforts of a 
bored Belgian army officer of the United Nations Armistice Observer 
Corps, Captain Philippe Lippens, assisted by a unit of Jordan's Arab 
Legion, commanded by Major-General Lash. It was investigated by G. 
Lankester Harding, the English Director of the Department of 
Antiquities of Jordan, and the French Dominican archaeologist and 
biblical scholar, Father Roland de Vaux. They retrieved hurxJreds of 
leather fragments, some large but most of them minute, in addition to 
the seven scrolls found In the same cave. 

Three of the rolls, an Incomplete Isaiah manuscript, a scroll of Hymns 
and one describing the War of the Sons of Light against the Sons of 
Darkness, were purchased in 1947 by the Hebrew University's 
Professor of Jewish Archaeology, E. L. Sukenik, who proceeded at full 
speed towards their publication. The other four were entrusted for 
study and eventual publication by their owner, the Arab metropolitan 
archbishop Mar Athanaslus, head of the Syrian Orthodox monastery of 
St Mark In Jerusalem, to the resident staff of the American School for 
Oriental Research In Jerusalem, Millar Burrows, W H. Brownlee and J. 
0. Trever. These three took charge of a complete Isaiah manuscript, 
the Commentary on Habakkuk and the Manual of Discipline, later 
renamed the Community Rule. Finally after the splitting of British 
mandatary Palestine Into Israel and Jordan, at the Ecole BIbllque et 
Archeologlque Fran^alse In Jordanian Jerusalem two young 
researchers, the Frenchman Dominique Barthelemy and the Pole 
Jozef Tadeusz Mlllk, were commissioned by de Vaux and Harding In 
late 1 951 to edit the fragments collected In Cave I. 

Between 1951 and 1956, ten further caves were discovered, most 
of them by Bedouin In the first Instance. Two yielded substantial 
quantities of material. Thousands and thousands of fragments were 
found In Cave 4 and several scrolls. Including the longest, the Temple 
Scroll, were retrieved from Cave II. The previously neglected ruins of a 
settlement In the proximity of the caves were also excavated by 
Harding and de Vaux, and the view soon prevailed that the texts, the 
caves and the Qumran site were Interconnected, and that consequently 
the study of the script and contents of the manuscripts should be 
accompanied by archaeological research. 

Progress was surprisingly quick despite the fact ttiat in those 
tialcyon days, apart from ttie small Nash papyrus, containing the Ten 
Commandments, found in Egypt and now in the Cambridge University 
Library, no Hebrew documents dating to Late Antiquity were extant to 
provide terms of comparison. In 1948 and 1949, Sukenik published in 
Hebrew two preliminary surveys entitled Hidden Scrolls from the 
JudaeanDesert, and concluded that the religious community involved 
was the ascetic sect of the Essenes, well known from the first-century 
CE writings of Philo, Josephus and Pliny the Elder, a thesis worked 
out in great detail from 1951 onwards by Andre Dupont-Sommer in 
Paris.l The first Qumran scrolls to reach the public, and the 
archaeological setting in which they were discovered, echoed three 
striking Essene characteristics. The Community Rule, a basic code of 
sectarian existence, reflects Essene common ownership and celibate 
life, while the geographical location of Qumran tallies with Pliny's 
Essene settlement on the north-western shore of the Dead Sea, south 
of Jericho. The principal novelty provided by the manuscripts consists 
of cryptic allusions to the historical origins of the Community launched 
by a priest called the Teacher of Righteousness, who was persecuted 
by a Jewish ruler, designated as the Wicked Priest. The Teacher and 
his followers were compelled to withdraw into the desert, where they 
awaited the impending manifestation of God's triumph over evil and 
darkness in the end of days, which had already begun. 

An almost unanimous agreement soon emerged, dating the 
discovery, on the basis of palaeography and archaeology to the last 
centuries of the Second Temple, i.e. second century BCE to first 
century CE. For a short while there was controversy between de Vaux, 
who decreed that the pottery and all the finds belonged to the 
Hellenistic era (i.e. pre-63 BCE), and Dupont-Sommer, who argued for 
an early Roman (post-63) date. But the finding of further caves and the 
excavation of the ruins of Qumran brought about, on 4 April 1952, de 
Vaux's dramatic retraction before the French Academie des 
Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. His revised archaeological synthesis, 
presented in the 1959 Schweich Lectures of the British Academy 
while admittedly incomplete, is still the best comprehensive statement 
available today.^ 

A third point of early consensus concerns the chronology of the 
events alluded to in the Qumran writings, especially the biblical 
commentaries published in the 1950S and the Damascus Document. 
The so-called Maccabaean theory, placing the conflict between the 
Teacher of Righteousness and the politico-religious Jewish leadership 
of the day in the time of the Maccabaean high priest or high priests 
Jonathan and/or Simon, was first formulated in my 1952 doctoral 
dissertation, published in 1953,^ and was soon to be adopted with 
variations in detail by such leading specialists as J. T. Milik, F. M. 
Cross and R. de Vaux7 

As long as the editorial task consisted only of publishing the seven 
scrolls from Cave I, work was advancing remarkably fast. Millar 
Burrows and his colleagues published their three manuscripts in 1950 
and 1951 .® Sukenik's three texts appeared in a posthumous volume in 
1954-5.5 In the interest of speed, these editors generously abstained 
from translating and Interpreting the texts, and were content with 
releasing the photographs and their transcription. The best-preserved 
sections of the Aramaic Genesis Apocryphon followed closely in 
1956.15 Even the fragments from Cave I, handled with alacrity and 
loving care by D. Barthelemy and J. T Milik, appeared in 1955.11 The 
secrecy rule of later years, restricting access to unpublished texts to a 
small team of editors appointed by de Vaux, had not yet been applied. 
On my first visit to Jerusalem in 1952, I was allowed to examine the 
fragments of the Rule of the Congregation (IQSa), as may be seen 
from the inclusion in the final edition of a reading suggested by me to 
the editors. 

The scroll fragments, partly found by the archaeologists, but mostly 
purchased from the Arabs, who nine times out of ten outwitted their 
professional rivals, were cleaned, sorted out and displayed in the so- 
called Scrollery In the Rockefeller Museum, later renamed the 
Palestine Archaeological Museum, to become after 1967 once more 
the Rockefeller Museum. If the mass of material disgorged by Cave 4 
had not upset the original arrangements, the scandalous delays in 
publishing in later years need never have happened. 

To deal with Cave 4, Father de Vaux improvised, in 1 953 and 1 954, 

a team of seven on the whole young and untried scholars. Barthelemy 
opted out, and the brilliant but unpredictable Abbe J. T. Milil<, who later 
left the Roman Catholic priesthood, became the pillar of the new 
group. He was joined by the French Abbe Jean Starcky and two 
Americans, Monsignor Patrick Skehan and Frank Moore Cross. John 
Marco Allegro and John Strugnell were recruited from Britain, and from 
Germany Claus-Hunno Hunzinger, who soon resigned and was 
replaced later by the French Abbe Maurice Baillet. 

It should have been evident to anyone with a modicum of good 
sense that a group of seven editors, of whom only two, Starcky and 
Skehan, had already established a scholarly reputation, was 
insufficient to perform such an enormous task on any level, let alone to 
produce the kind of 'last word' edition de Vaux appears to have 
contemplated. The second serious error committed by de Vaux was 
that he wholly relied on his personal, quasi-patriarchal authority, 
instead of setting up from the start a supervisory body empowered, if 
necessary, to sack those members of the team who might fail to fulfil 
their obligations promptly and to everyone's satisfaction. 

Yet before depicting the chaos characterizing the publishing 
process in the 1970s and 1980s, in fairness it should be stressed that, 
during the first decade or so, the industry of the group could not 
seriously be faulted. Judging from the completion around 1060 of a 
primitive Concordance, recorded on handwritten index cards, of all the 
words appearing in the fragments found in Caves 2 to 10, it is clear 
that at an early date most of the texts had been identified and 
deciphered. The many criticisms advanced in subsequent years, 
focusing on these scholars' refusal to put their valuable findings into 
the public domain, should not prevent one from acknowledging that this 
original achievement, in which J. T. Milik had the lion's share, deserves 
unrestricted admiration. 

After the publication of the Cave I fragments in 1 955, the contents of 
the eight minor caves (2-3, 5-10) were released in a single volume in 
1963.1^ In 1965 J. A. Sanders, an American scholar who was not part 
of the original team, edited the Psalms Scroll, found in Cave II in 
1956.15 Finally with its typescript completed and dispatched to the 
printers a year before the fatal date of 1967, the first poorly edited 

volume of Cave 4 fragments saw the light of day in 1 968.^ 

2. 1967-1990 

With the occupation of East Jerusalem in the Six Day War, all the scroll 
fragments housed in the Palestine Archaeological Museum came 
under the control of the Israel Department of Antiquities. Only the 
Copper Scroll and a few other fragments exhibited in Amman 
remained in Jordanian hands. The Temple Scroll, which until then had 
been held by a dealer in Bethlehem,!^ was quickly retrieved with the 
help of army intelligence and acquired by the State of Israel. Vlgael 
Yadin, deputy prime minister of Israel in the 1970s, mixing politics with 
scholarship, managed to complete a magisterial three-volume 
publication by 1977.1^ 

A gentlemanly gesture on the part of the Israelis, who decided not to 
interfere with de Vaux, left him and his scattered troop in charge of the 
Cave 4 texts.lZ As for the unpublished manuscripts from Cave II, they 
were handled by Dutch and American academics.l? 

Father de Vaux, whose anti-Israeli sentiments were no secret, 
quietly withdrew to his tent and remained inactive until his death in 
1971 . Another French Dominican, Pierre Benoit, succeeded him as it 
were by natural selection in the editorial chair in 1972. The Israeli 
archaeological establishment, still aloof, conferred its blessing on him. 
By then, at my instigation, C. H. Roberts, Secretary to the Delegates, 
i.e. chief executive of Oxford University Press, decided to demand 
speedier publication, but Benoit's ineffectual rallying call either elicited 
no response from his men, or produced promises which were never 
honoured.l? In a lecture delivered in 1977, I coined the phrase which 
was thereafter often repeated that the greatest Hebrew manuscript 
discovery was fast becoming 'the academic scandal par excellence of 
the twentieth century.^ 

One may ask how and why, after such an apparently propitious 
beginning, a group of scholars, most of whom were gifted, had turned 
the editorial work on the Scrolls into such a lamentable story? In my 

opinion, tlie 'academic scandal of tlie century' resulted from a 
concatenation of causes. Lack of organization and unfortunate choice 
of collaborators can be blamed on de Vaux. For the majority of the 
team members who had other jobs to cope with, the overiong part-time 
effort caused their original enthusiasm to fade and vanish. J. T. Milil<, 
the most productive of them until the mid-seventies, appears to have 
been disenchanted by the cool reception of his highly speculative 
thesis contained in his edition of The Books olEnochAramaic 
Fragments of Qumran Cave 4(1976). 'Academic imperialism' was 
also a fector. It was easier to hold that 'These texts belong to us, not to 
you!' than to admit that the procrastinating editors had undertal<en 
more than they could deliver. Add to this the initial unwillingness of the 
Israelis to shoulder their responsibilities, and, as will be shown, their 
lack of foresight and repeated misjudgements before, finally, in the late 
1980s, they began to take an active part in matters of editorial policy. 
Need I say more? 

The inevitable began to happen: in 1980 Patrick Skehan died, 
followed by Jean Starcky in 1986, both without publishing their 
assignments. Eugene Uirich and Emile Puech became their heirs, 
while F. M. Cross and J. Strugnell distributed portions of their texts to 
serve as dissertation topics for doctoral students at Harvard University. 
Though responsible for some good, and occasionally excellent, 
monographs, this unfortunate practice further delayed progress as 
thesis writers like to keep their cards ciose to their chests untii their 
PhDs are in the bag. 

In 1986, a year before his death, Pierre Benoit resigned as editor- 
in-chief and the depleted international team elected as his successor 
the talented but tardy John Strugnell, who in thirty-three years failed to 
produce a single volume of text. In 1987, at a public session of a 
Scrolls Symposium held in London, I urged him to publish at once the 
photographic plates, while he and his acolytes carried on with their 
work at their customary snail pace. This request was met with a one- 
syllable negative answer. To the surprise of many the Israel Antiquities 
Authority (or lAA) acquiesced in Strugnell's appointment. His 
grandiose schemes never bore fruit. In 1990, after a compromising 
interview given by him to an Israeli newspaper, in which he was 

reported as having made disparaging remarl<s not only about Israelis, 
but also about the Jewish religion - he called it horrible - his fellow 
editors persuaded him to tender his resignation. It was accepted by 
the lAA on health grounds. Belatedly even the Israelis saw the light, 
andde facto terminated the thirty-seven-year-old and ultimately 
disastrous reign of the international team. 

3. 1990-2003 

After John Strugnell's withdrawal, the very capable Emanuel Tov, 
Professor of Biblical Studies at the Hebrew University was appointed 
chief editor, the first Jew and the first Israeli to head the Qumran 
publication project. He began his activities auspiciously by 
redistributing the unpublished texts among freshly recruited 
collaborators. The new editorial team, of which I became a member in 
1991 , consists of some sixty scholars compared to the original seven! 
Unfortunately Tov did not feel free to cancel the 'secrecy rule', 
introduced and strictly enforced by de Vaux and his successors, 
prohibiting access to unpublished texts to all but a few chosen editors. 
However, the protective dam erected around the fragments by the 
international team collapsed in the autumn of 1991 under the growing 
pressure of public opinion, mobilized in particular by Hershel Shanks, 
in the columns of the widely read Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR). 
The first landmark event leading towards full freedom was the 
publication in early September by BAR'S parent body the Biblical 
Archaeology Society, of seventeen Cave 4 manuscripts reconstructed 
with the help of a computer by Ben Zion Wacholder and Martin 
Abegg^from the Preliminary Concordance, alluded to earlier, which 
was privately issued in twenty-five copies (in theory only for the use of 
the official editors) by John Strugnell in 1988.^ Later in the same 
month out of the blue came the announcement by William A. Moffett 
that the Huntington Library of San Marino, California, a renowned 
research institution, would bring to an end the forty-year-old closed 
shop by opening its complete photographic archive of the Qumran 

Scrolls to all qualified scholars._ 

The lAA and the official editors attempted to resist but, by the end of 
October, under pressure from the Knesset, Israel's parliament, they 
were all forced to recognize that the battle was lost and all restrictions 
had to be lifted. Almost at once, the Scroll photograph archives at the 
Oxford Centre for Postgraduate Hebrew Studies and at the Ancient 
Biblical Manuscript Center at Claremont, previously legally compelled 
to restrict access only to persons approved by Jerusalem, were also 
thrown open to all competent research scholars. Moreover, in 
November 1991 the Biblical Archaeology Society published a two- 
volume photographic edition of the bulk of the Qumran fragments 
compiled by Robert Eisenman and James Robinson.^ How the two 
Californian professors obtained the material remains unclear This 
new policy has had an essentially beneficial effect on Qumran studies. 
Since vested interests are no longer protected, the rate of publication 
has noticeably accelerated and from 1992 learned periodicals have 
been flooded with short or not so short papers by scholars claiming 
fresh insights. Free competition has expedited the official edition itself. 
The first Cave 4 volume of biblical texts, announced as imminent by 
Father Benoit in 1983, actually appeared -pace the 1992 date on the 
cover page — on 4 March 1993.^ Scholarship and the general public 
were to become the beneficiaries of the new era of liberty. Only the 
procrastinators and the selfish stood to lose. By 1996, thanks to the 
highly efficient stewardship of the editor-in-chief, Emanuel Tov, four 
further volumes have been published and another four are in the 
pipeline. Compared with the output of the previous regime, this is an 
admirable change indeed. At the time of the revision of this book, 
thirty-six out of the thirty-nine volumes o1 Discoveries in ttie 
JudaeanDesert (DJD) have appeared, twenty-eight of them since the 
watershed year of the Scrolls 'revolution' in 1991. 


Between 1947 and 1956, the eleven Qumran caves yielded a dozen 
scrolls written on leather and one embossed on copper. To these we 
have to add fragments on papyrus or leather, the precise number of 
which is unknown but probably in the order of six figures. About 800 
original documents are fully or partly represented. The Cave 4 list 
alone contains 575titles,^ though it seems that some twenty 
documents (40342-61) probably originating from non-Qumran 
Judaean desert locations were mistakenly catalogued as 4Q material. 
Most scrolls are written in Hebrew, a smaller portion in Aramaic and 
only a few attest the ancient Greek or Septuagint version of the 

Among the texts previously known, all the books of the Hebrew 
Scriptures are extant at least in fragments save Esther, the absence of 
which may be purely accidental.^ Even Daniel, the most recent work 
to enter the Palestinian canon in the mid-second century BCE, is 
attested to by eight manuscripts.^ There are also remains of Aramaic 
and Greek scriptural translations. 

Furthermore, the caves have yielded some of the Apocrypha, i.e. 
religious works missing from the Hebrew Scriptures but included in the 
Septuagint, the Bible of Greek-speaking Jews. Caves 4 and 11 
revealed the Book of Tobit in Aramaic and in Hebrew, Psalm cli, 
described in the Greek version as a 'supernumerary" psalm, and the 
Wisdom of Jesus ben Sira or Ecclesiasticus in Hebrew. Part of the 
latter, chapters xxxixxliv, has also survived at Masada, and hence 
cannot be later than 73/4 CE, the date when the stronghold was 
captured by the Romans, and two medieval manuscripts, discovered 
in the storeroom (genizah) of a synagogue in Cairo in 1896, have 
preserved about two thirds of the Greek version. 

A third category of religious books, the Pseudepigrapha, though 
very popular in some Jewish circles, failed to attain canonical rank 
either in Palestine or in the Diaspora. Some of them, previously known 
in Greek, Latin or Syriac translations, have turned up in their original 
Hebrew (e.g. the Book of Jubilees) or Aramaic (e.g. the Book of 
Enoch). A good many further compositions pertaining to this class 
have also come to light, such as fictional accounts relating among 
others to Joseph, Amram, Moses, Joshua or Jeremiah, as well as 

apocryphal psalms, five of which have survived also in Syriac 
translation, others being revealed for the first time at Qumran. 

The sectarian Dead Sea Scrolls, thought to have been composed or 
revised by the Qumran Community constitute, with one exception,^ a 
complete novelty. This literature comprises rule books, Bible 
interpretation of various kinds, religious poetry. Wisdom compositions 
in prose and in verse, sectarian calendars and liturgical texts, one of 
them purporting to echo the angelic worship in the heavenly temple. To 
these are to be added several 'horoscopes' or, more precisely, 
documents of astrological physiognomy, a literary genre based on the 
belief that the temper, physical features and fate of an individual 
depend on the configuration of the heavens at the time of the person's 
birth, and a text (brontologion) predicting prodigies if thunder is heard 
on certain days, with the moon passing through given signs of the 
Zodiac. Finally, the Copper Scroll alludes in cryptic language to sixty- 
four caches of precious metals and scrolls, including another copy of 
this same inventory written without riddles. 

After a first few gaffes committed before the excavation of the site, 
the palaeographical, archaeological and literary-historical study of the 
evidence produced a general consensus among scholars concerning 
(a) the age, (b) the provenance and (c) the significance of the 
discoveries. Holders of fringe opinions have recently tended to explain 
this consensus as tyrannically imposed from above by Roland de Vaux 
and his henchmen. The truth, however, is that the opinio communis 
has resulted from a natural evolutionary process - from arguments 
which others found persuasive even when advanced by single 
individuals often unconnected with the international team - and not from 
an almighty establishment forcing an official view down the throats of 

(a) The Dating of the Manuscripts 

Palaeography was the first method employed to establish the age of 
the texts. Despite the paucity of comparative material, experts 

independently arrived at dates ranging between the second century 
BCE and the first century CE. By the 1960s, in addition to the Qumran 
texts, they could mal<e use also of manuscripts from Masada (first 
century CE), as well as from the Murabba'at and other Judaean desert 
caves yielding first- and second-century CE Jewish writings. A rather 
too rigid, but useful, comprehensive system was quickly devised by F. 
M. Cross.^ While admittedly controversial if unsupported either by 
actual dates in the manuscripts themselves (a phenomenon, alas, 
unknown at Qumran) or by external criteria, these palaeographical 
conclusions were to receive a twofold boost from archaeology and 
radiocarbon dating. The archaeological thesis, based Inter alia on the 
study of pottery and coins, was formulated by R. de Vaux (cf. note 5 on 
p. 4). He assigned the occupation of Qumran to the period between 
the second half of the second century BCE and the first war between 
Jews and Romans (66-70 CE). 

Radiocarbon tests were first applied to the cloth wrapping of one of 
the scrolls as early as 1 951 . The date suggested was 33 CE, but one 
had to reckon with a 10 per cent margin of error each way^ However, 
with the improved techniques of the 1990s, eight Qumran manuscripts 
were subjected to Accelerator Mass Spectrometry or AM S. Six of 
them were found to be definitely pre-Christian, and only two straddled 
over the first century BCE/first century CE dividing line.^ Most 
importantly with a single exception - the Testament of Qahat being 
shown to be about 300 years earlier than expected - the radiocarbon 
dates confirm in substance those proposed by the palaeographers. 
Unfortunately the manuscripts tested in 1990 did not include 
historically sensitive texts. But in 1994 the lAA invited the Arizona AMS 
Laboratory at the University of Arizona, Tucson to analyse eighteen 
texts and two linen fragments. Thirteen of the manuscripts came 
definitely from Qumran and one of these had already been carbon- 
dated in Zurich. Three texts were 'date-bearing'. The general 
conclusion is as follows: 'Measurements on samples of known ages 
are in good agreement with those known ages. Ages determined from 
^^C measurements on the remainder of the Dead Sea Scroll samples 
are in reasonable agreement with paleographic estimates of such 

ages, in the case where those estimates are available. '_ On the 
whole, the results of this second radiocarbon analysis are somewhat 
disappointing in that, while the dates arrived at accommodate the 
palaeographic proposals, the margin of error is considerably greater 
than that appearing in the 1 990 Zurich tests. Nevertheless, Arizona has 
scored on one highly significant point: the Habakkuk Commentary, 
chief source of the history of the Qumran sect, is definitely put in the 
pre-Christian era between 120 and 5 BCE. Inconsequence, fringe 
scholars who see in this writing allusions to events described in the 
New Testament will find they have a problem on their hands. In sum, 
the general scholarly view today places the Qumran Scrolls roughly 
between 200 BCE and 70 CE, with a small portion of the texts 
possibly stretching back to the third century BCE, and the bulk of the 
extant material dating to the first century BCE, i.e. late Hasmonaean or 
early Herodian in the jargon of the palaeographers. 

(b) The Provenance of the Manuscripts 

With negligible exceptions, scholarly opinion recognized already in the 
1950s that the Scrolls found in the caves and the nearby ruined 
settlement were related. To take the obvious example. Cave 4 with its 
575 (or perhaps 555) documents lies literally within a stone's throw 
from the buildings. At the same time, the Essene identity of the ancient 
inhabitants of Qumran gained general acceptance. Today the Essene 
theory is questioned by some, but usually for unsound reasons. They 
adopt a simplistic attitude in comparing the two sets of evidence, 
namely the classical sources (Philo, Josephus and Pliny the Elder) and 
Qumran, and any disagreement or contradiction between them is 
hailed as final proof against the Essene thesis. Yet, if its intricacies are 
handled with sophistication, it is still the best hypothesis today^ 
Indeed, it accounts best for such striking peculiarities as common 
ownership of property and the lack of reference to women in the 
Community Rule, the probable coexistence of celibate and married 
sectaries (in accordance with Flavius Josephus' account of two kinds 

of Essenes), and the remarkable coincidence between the 
geographical setting of Qumran and Pliny the Elder's description of an 
Essene establishment near the Dead Sea between Jericho and 
Engedi. I admit of course that the Scrolls and the archaeological data 
surrounding them do not always fully agree with the Greek and Latin 
notices, and that both the Qumran and the classical accounts need to 
be interpreted and adjusted, bearing in mind that the Scrolls represent 
the views of initiates against those of more or less complete 
outsiders.^ But since none of the competing theories associating the 
Qumran group with Pharisees, Sadducees, Zealots, or Jewish- 
Christians can withstand critical scrutiny, I remain unrepentant in 
upholding my statement formulated in 1977 as still valid today: 'The 
final verdict must ... be that of the proposed solutions the Essene 
theory is relatively the soundest. It is even safe to say that it possesses 
a high degree of intrinsic probability.'^ 

(c) The Significance oftlie Qumran Scroiis 

The uniqueness of the Qumran discovery was due to the fact that with 
the possible exception of the Nash papyrus referred to earlier (p. 3), no 
Jewish text in Hebrew or Aramaic written on perishable material could 
previously be traced to the pre-Christian period. Before 1947, the 
oldest Hebrew text of the whole of Isaiah was the Ben Asher codex 
from Cairo dated to 895 CE, as against the complete Isaiah Scroll 
from Cave I, which is about a millennium older. The Apocrypha and 
Pseudepigrapha, save the Hebrew Ben Sira and the Aramaic 
fragments of the Testament of Levi from the Cairo Genizah, had 
survived only in translation. The sectarian writings found in the caves, 
apart from the already mentioned Damascus Document (p. II), count as 
a total novelty. 

To begin with, the Qumran Scrolls and the other Judaean Desert 
finds have created a new discipline: ancient, i.e. pre-medieval, 
Hebrew codicology. We now possess concrete evidence that scribes 
carefully prepared the leather or papyrus on which they were to write, 

often ruling them, with vegetable ink, kept in ink-wells. Paragraphs and 
larger unit openings were indicated by symbols in the margins. Longer 
compositions were written on scrolls, on one side of the sheets only, 
some of them numbered, which were subsequently sewn together 
Papyrus documents were often reused, with a different text inscribed 
on the verso. Short works such as letters were recorded on small 
pieces of writing material: leather, papyrus, wood or potsherd. By 
contrast, no book or codex, with pages covered with script on both 
sides and bound together, has come to light at Qumran, or in any other 
Judaean Desert site. 

The Qumran finds have also substantially altered our views 
concerning the fexf and canon of the Bible. The many medieval 
Hebrew scriptural manuscripts, representing the traditional or 
Masoretic text, are remarkable for their almost general uniformity 
Compared to the often meaningful divergences between the traditional 
Hebrew text and its ancient Greek, Latin or Syriac translations, the few 
variant readings of the Masoretic Bible manuscripts, ignoring obvious 
scribal errors, mainly concern spelling. By contrast, the Qumran 
scriptural scrolls, and especially the fragments, are characterized by 
extreme fluidity: they often differ not just from the customary wording 
but also, when the same book is attested by several manuscripts, 
among themselves. In fact, some of the fragments echo what later 
became the Masoretic text; others resemble the Hebrew underlying the 
Greek Septuagint; yet others recall the Samaritan Torah or 
Pentateuch, the only part of the Bible which the Jews of Samaria 
accepted as Scripture. Some Qumran fragments represent a mixture 
of these, or something altogether different. It should be noted, however, 
that none of these variations affects the scriptural message itself. In 
short, while largely echoing the contents of biblical books, Qumran has 
opened an entirely new era in the textual history of the Hebrew 

The Community's attitude to the biblical canon, i.e. the list of books 
considered as Holy Writ, is less easy to define, as no such list of titles 
has survived. Canonical status may be presumed indirectly either from 
authoritative quotations or from theological commentary. As regards 
the latter, the caves have yielded various interpretative works on the 

Pentateuch (the Temple Scroll, reworked Pentateuch manuscripts, the 
Genesis Apocryphon and other commentaries on Genesis) and the 
Prophets (e.g. Isaiah, Habakkuk, Nahum, etc.), but only on the Psalms 
among the Writings, the third traditional division of the Jewish Bible. 
From the texts available in 1988, I collected over fifty examples of 
Bible citations which were used as proof in doctrinal expositions, thus 
indicating that they were thought to possess special religious or 
doctrinal importance.^ 

On the other hand, the Psalms Scroll from Gave 11 contains seven 
apocryphal poems, including chapter L1 of the Wisdom of Jesus ben 
Sira, not annexed to, but interspersed among, the canonical hymns. 
This maybe explained as a liturgical phenomenon, a collection of 
songs chanted during worship; but it may and in my view probably 
does, mean that at Qumran the concept 'Bible' was still hazy, and the 
'canon' open-ended, which would account for the remarkable freedom 
in the treatment of the text of Scripture by a community whose life was 
nevertheless wholly centred on the Bible. 

There are two Apocrypha attested at Qumran. In connection with 
Tobit one can note that four out of the five Cave 4 manuscripts are in 
Aramaic and only one in Hebrew, but they all reflect the longer version 
of the Greek Tobit. So the long-debated original language of this book 
is still uncertain, but Aramaic has become the likeliest candidate. On 
the other hand, the Hebrew poem from Ben Sira LI has a patently 
better chance of reflecting the original than either the Greek translation 
by the author's grandson, preserved in the Septuagint, or the Hebrew 
of the medieval Cairo Genizah manuscripts, because the Qumran 
version alone faithfully reflects the acrostic character of the 
composition with the lines starting with the successive letters of the 
Hebrew alphabet, aleph, bet, gimel, etc. 

Qumran has also added to the Pseudepigrapha several new works 
dealing with biblical figures such as Joseph, Qahat, Amram, Moses, 
Joshua, Samuel. Among the works in this category which were 
previously known, the Aramaic fragments of Enoch deserve special 
mention because they appear to attest only four out of the five books of 
the Ethiopic Enoch.^ Book 2 (i.e. chapters XXXVII-LXXII), which 
describes the heavenly apocalyptic figure called son of man, a subject 

on which New Testament scholars have wasted a considerable 
amount of ink without approaching even the vaguest consensus, is 
missing at Qumran. Thus the Aramaic Enoch does not support their 
speculations any more than do the Greek manuscripts, which are also 
without chapters XXXVII-LXXII of the Ethiopic Enoch.H 

The contribution of the Scrolls to general Jewsh history is negligible, 
and even to the history of the Community is fairly limited. The chief 
reason for this is that none of the non-biblical compositions found at 
Qumran belongs to the historical genre. The sectarian persons and 
events mentioned in the manuscripts are depicted in cryptic language 
as fulfilment of ancient prophecies relating to the last age. The chief 
sources of sectarian history, the Damascus Document and the Bible 
commentaries or pesharim, identify the Community's principal 
enemies as the kings of Yavan (Greece) and the rulers of the Kittim 
(Romans). Also, the Nahum Commentary's historical perspective 
extends from Antiochus (no doubt Epiphanes, c. 170 BCE) to the 
conquest by the Kittim (probably 63 BCE). Names familiar from 
Jewish or Graeco-Roman history appear here and there. The Nahum 
Commentary alludes to Antiochus, and to another Syrian Greek king, 
Demetrius (most likely Demetrius III at the beginning of the first century 
BCE). Very fragmentary historical calendars from Cave 4 contain the 
phrase 'Aemilius killed', meaning no doubt Aemilius Scaurus, 
governor of Syria at the time of Pompeys conquest of Jerusalem in 
63. They mention also Jewish rulers of the Maccabaean — 
Hasmonaean era (second-first centuries BCE), Shelamzion or 
Salome-Alexandra, widow and successor of Alexander Jannaeus (76- 
67 BCE); Hyrcanus and John (Yohanan), either John Hyrcanus I 
(135/4-104 BCE) or more likely II (63-40 BCE),^ and King Jonathan, 
Alexander Jannaeus or, in my opinion, more likely Jonathan 
Maccabaeus (161-143/2 BCE).^ In one respect, despite the absence 
of detail, the evidence is telling: all these characters belong to the 
second or the first half of the first century BCE. So also do most of the 
coins discovered at Qumran. 

The mainstream hypothesis, built on archaeology and literary 
analysis, sketches the history of the Scrolls Community (or Essene 
sect) as follows.^ Its prehistory starts in Palestine - some claim also 

Babylonian antecedents - with the rise of the Hasidic movement, at the 
beginning of the second century BCE as described in the first bool< of 
the IVIaccabees (I IVIac. ii, 42-44; vii, 13-17). Sectarian (Essene) 
history itself originated in a clash between the Wicked Priest or Priests 
(Jonathan and/or possibly Simon Maccabaeus) and the Teacher of 
Righteousness, the anonymous priest who was the spiritual leader of 
the Community. The sect consisted of the survivors of the Hasidim, 
linked with a group of dissident priests who, by the mid-second 
century, came under the leadership of the sons of Zadok, associates 
of the Zadokite high priests. This history continues at Qumran, and no 
doubt in many other Palestinian localities, until the years of the first 
Jewish rebellion against Rome, when possibly in 68 CE the settlement 
is believed to have been occupied by Vespasian's soldiers. Whether 
the legionaries encountered sectarian resistance - such a theory would 
be consonant with Josephus' reference to an Essene general among 
the revolutionaries^ and to a massacre of the Essenes by the 
Romans^ - or whether the threatening presence of the contingents of 
Zealot Sicarii, who had already expelled the Essenes from Qumran, 
provoked a Roman intervention, are purely speculative matters. One 
fact is certain, however. No one of the original occupants of Qumran 
returned to the caves to reclaim their valuable manuscripts. 

A variation on this theme, called the Groningen hypothesis, 
postulates a whole series of six Wicked Priests, and identifies the 
Community not with the main Essene sect but with one of Its splinter 
groups.!^ The Zealot theory, elaborated In the 1950s in Oxford by Sir 
Godfrey Driver and Cecil Roth,^ is hard to reconcile with the totality of 
the available evidence, as most of the Qumran documents predate the 
Zealot period. 

More recently Norman Golb of Chicago has launched a forceful 
attack on the common opinion. His objections, reiterated in a series of 
papers,^ culminated in 1995 in a hefty tome.* The target of his 
criticism is the provenance of the scrolls found at Qumran. According 
to him, the manuscripts originated in a Jerusalem library (or libraries), 
the contents of which were concealed in desert caves when the capital 
was besieged between 67 and 70 CE. The chief corollary of the 

hypothesis is that the Essenes had nothing to do either with the 
Qumran settlement - a fortress in Golb's opinion^ - or with the 

The early assumption of Scroll scholars that every non-biblical Dead 
Sea text was an Essene writing^ might have justified to some extent 
Norman Golb's scepticism. But nowadays specialists distinguish 
between Qumran manuscripts written by members of the Essene sect, 
and others either predating the Community or simply brought there 
from outside. Emanuel Tov, for instance, has drawn a dividing line on 
scribal grounds between scrolls produced at Qumran and the rest.^ 
However, in my view the soft underbelly of the Jerusalem hypothesis is 
revealed - apart from the patent weakness of the archaeological 
interpretation, for Qumran is not a fortress - by the composition of the 
manuscript collection itself, definitely pointing towards a sectarian 
library. If Cave 4 is taken as representative, whereas several biblical 
books (Kings, Lamentations, Ezra and Chronicles) are attested only in 
single copies; and others, as important as Numbers, Joshua, Judges, 
Proverbs, Ruth and Ecclesiastes, in tm copies, we find ten copies of 
the Community Rule and nine of the Damascus Document. Over a 
dozen manuscripts contain sectarian calendars, yet not one 
mainstream calendar figures among the 575 (or 555) compositions 
found in that cave! So, if the texts discovered at Qumran came from 
the capital, can their source have been an Essene library in 


Since Qumran and early Christianity partly overlap, it is not surprising 
that from the very beginning of Dead Sea Scrolls research some 
scholars endeavoured to identify the two. The first attempt came from 
England in the early 1950s, with Jacob Teicher of Cambridge 
modestly advancing the thesis that Jesus was the Teacher of 
Righteousness and Saint Paul the Wicked Priest.^ This trend was 
continued with loud media support by J. M. Allegro's speculation about 

the role of ammanita muscaiia, a hallucinogenic fungus, in the 
genesis of the Christian Church.^ It reached its climax with Barbara 
Thiering's discovery that John the Baptist was the Teacher of 
Righteousness and the married, divorced and remarried Jesus, father 
of four children, the Wicked Priest.^ As for Robert Eisenman, he 
ignores Jesus, and casts instead his brother, James, in the role of the 
Teacher of Righteousness, with Paul playing the Wicked Priest.^ In 
my opinion all these theories fail the basic credibility test: they do not 
spring from, but are foisted on, the texts.^ 

These - to say the least - improbable speculations as well as the no 
less fantastic claim that Qumran Cave 7 yielded remains of the Gospel 
of Mark and other New Testament writings in Greek^ need not detain 
us any longer. 

Turning to the real relationship between the Scrolls and the New 
Testament, this can be presented under a threefold heading. (1) We 
note (a) fundamental similarities of language (both in the Scrolls and in 
the New Testament the faithful are called 'sons of light'); (b) ideology 
(both communities considered themselves as the true Israel, governed 
by twelve leaders, and expected the imminent arrival of the Kingdom of 
God); (c) attitude to the Bible (both considered their own history as a 
fulfilment of the words of the Prophets). However, all correspondences 
such as these may be due to the Palestinian religious atmosphere of 
the epoch, without entailing any direct influence. 

(2) More specific features, such as monarchic administration (i.e. 
single leaders, overseers at Qumran, bishops in Christian 
communities) and the practice of religious communism in the strict 
discipline of the sect and at least in the early days in the Jerusalem 
church (cf. Acts ii, 44-5), would suggest a direct causal connection. If 
so, it is likely that the young and inexperienced church modelled itself 
on the by then well-tried Essene society. 

(3) In the study of the historical Jesus, the charismatic- 
eschatological aspects of the Scrolls have provided the richest 
gleanings for comparison. For example, the Prayer of Nabonidus, 
known since the mid-1 950s,^ and concerned with the story of 
Nabonidus' cure by a Jewish exorcist who forgave his sins, provides 

the most telling parallel to the Gospel account of the healing of a 
paralytic in Capernaum whose sins Jesus declared forgiven.^ 

The second example is the so-called Resurrection fragment 
(4Q521, cf. below, pp. 412-3).^ In this poem, the age of the 
eschatological kingdom is characterized, with the help of Psalm cxivi, 
7-8 and Isaiah Ixi, 1, by the liberation of captives, the curing of the 
blind, the straightening of the bent, the healing of the wounded, the 
raising of the dead and the proclamation of the good news to the poor 
Likewise, in the Gospels, victory over disease and the devil is viewed 
as the sure sign of the initial manifestation of God's reign. Jesus is 
reported to have announced: 

if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, the Kingdom of God 
has come upon you. 

(Lk. xi, 20) 

Similarly to John the Baptist's inquiry whether Jesus was the final 
messenger the following reply is sent: 

Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind recei\fi their sight and 
the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are 
raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. 

(Matth. xi, 4-5) 

Note furthermore that Community Rule 4:6 lists healing as the chief 
eschatological reward and that according to the Palestinian Aramaic 
paraphrases of Genesis ill, 15 the days of the Messiah will bring an 
ultimate cure to the children of Eve wounded by the serpent in the 
garden of Eden.^ 


If one had to single out the most revolutionary novelty furnished by 
Qumran, its contribution to our understanding of the genesis of Jewish 

literary compositions could justifiably be our primary choice. 
Comparative study of biblical manuscripts, where no two copies 
display the same text, and of sectarian worl<s, attested in a number of 
sometimes startlingly different redactions, has revealed in one leading 
scholar's words 'insufficiently controlled copying'.^ In my view, 
however, the phenomenon would better be described as scribal 
creative freedom. Qumran manuscripts of Scripture, and even more of 
the Community Rule and the War Scroll, indicate that diversity not 
uniformity reigned there and then, and that redactor-copyists felt free 
to improve the composition which they were reproducing. Or, to quote 

The Dead Sea Scrolls have afforded for the first time direct insight into 
the creative literary-religious process at work within that variegated 
Judaism which flourished during the last two centuries of quasi- 
national independence, before the catastrophe of 70 CE forced the 
rabbinic successors of the Pharisees to attempt to create an 
'orthodoxy' by reducing dangerous multiplicity to a simple, tidy and 
easily controllable unity.^ 

Looking at the Qumran discoveries from an overall perspective, it is - 1 
believe - the student of the history of Palestinian Judaism in the inter- 
Testamental era (150 BCE-70 CE) who is their principal beneficiary. 
For such an expert, the formerly quite unknown sectarian writings of the 
Dead Sea literature have opened new avenues of exploration in the 
shadowy era of the life of Jesus, the rise of Christianity and the 
emergence of rabbinic Judaism. From the Jewish side, it was 
previously poorly documented. The rabbis of the first and second 
centuries CE had not permitted religious writings of that epoch to go 
down to posterity unless they conformed fully to their ideas, and 
although some of these texts were preserved by Christians (viz. the 
Apocrypha and many of the Pseudepigrapha), the fact that they had 
served as a vehicle for Church apologetics caused their textual 
reliability to be suspect. But the Scrolls are unaffected by either 
Christian or rabbinic censorship, and now that their evidence is 

complete, historians will be thoroughly acquainted, not with just another 
aspect of Jewish beliefs or customs, but with the whole organization, 
teaching and aspirations of a religious community flourishing during 
the last centuries of the Second Temple. 

The Scrolls have understandably awakened intense interest in the 
academic world, but why have they appealed so strongly to the 
imagination of the non-specialist? I would say, the outstanding 
characteristic of our age appears to be a desire to reach back to the 
greatest attainable purity to the basic truth free of jargon. Affecting the 
whole of our outlook, it has necessarily included the domain of 
religious thought and behaviour, and with it, in the Western world, the 
whole subject of Judaeo-Christian culture and spirituality. A search is 
being made for the original meaning of issues with which we have 
become almost too familiar and which with the passing of the centuries 
have tended to become choked with inessentials, and it has led not 
only to a renewed preoccupation with the primitive but fully developed 
expression of these issues in the Scriptures, but also to a desire for 
knowledge and understanding of their prehistory. 

The laws and rules, hymns and other liturgical works as well as the 
Bible commentaries of the Qumran Community respond to this need in 
that they add substance and depth to the historical period in which 
Jewish Christianity and rabbinic Judaism originated. They reveal one 
facet of the spiritual ferment at work among the various Palestinian 
religious parties at that time, a ferment which culminated in a thorough 
re-examination and re interpretation of the fundamentals of the Jewish 
faith. By dwelling in such detail on the intimate organization of their 
society on the role attributed to their Teacher and on their ultimate 
hopes and expectations, the sect of the Scrolls has exposed its own 
resulting synthesis. This in its turn has thrown into relief and added a 
new dimension to its dissenting contemporaries. Thus, compared with 
the ultra-conservative rigidity of the Essene Rule, rabbinic Judaism 
reveals itself as progressive and flexible, while the religion preached 
and practised by Jesus of Nazareth stands out invested with religious 
individuality and actuality. Also, by comparison to all three, the 
ideology of the Gentile Church sounds a definitely alien note.^ Yet at 
the same time, the common ground from which they all sprang, and 

their affinities and borrowings, show tliemselves more clearly than ever 
before. It Is no exaggeration to state that none of these religious 
movements can properly be understood independently of the others. 

Essenism is dead. The brittle structure of its stiff and exclusive 
brotherhood was unable to withstand the national catastrophe which 
strucl< Palestinian Judaism in 70 CE. Animated by the loftiest of ideals 
and devoted to the observance of 'perfect holiness', it yet lacked the 
pliant strength arxJ the elasticity of thought and depth of spiritual vision 
which enabled rabbinic Judaism to survive and flourish. And although 
the Teacher of Righteousness clearly sensed ttie deeper obligations 
implicit in the Mosaic Law, he was without the genius of Jesus ttie Jew 
who succeeded in urKOvering the essence of religion as an existential 
relationship between man and man and man and God. 

//. The Community 

Since the early 1950s, the information garnered from the Scrolls and 
from Qumran's archaeological remains has been combined by experts 
to form a persuasive portrait of the people to which they allude. Yet for 
all the advances made in knowledge and understanding, the enigma of 
the sect is by no means definitely solved. After all this time, we are still 
not certain that we have collated the whole evidence correctly or 
interpreted it properly Questions continue to arise in the mind and 
there is still no way to be sure of the answers. 

Our perplexity is mainly due to an absence in the documents, singly 
or together, of any systematic exposition of the sect's constitution and 
laws. The Community Rule legislates for a group of ascetics living in a 
kind of 'monastic' society, the statutes of the Damascus Document for 
an ordinary lay existence; MMTCMqisaf Ma'ase ha-Torah, or Some 
Observances of the Law) probably echoes the prehistory or early 
history of the sect; and the War Rule and Messianic Rule in their turn, 
while associated with the Community Rule and the Damascus 
Document, and no doubt reflecting to some extent a contemporary 
state of affairs, first and foremost plan for a future age. 

Taken together, however, it is clear from this literature that the 
sectaries regarded themselves as the true Israel, the repository of the 
authentic traditions of the religious body from which they had seceded. 
Accordingly, they organized their movement so that it corresponded 
faithfully to that of the Jewish people, dividing it into priests and laity (or 
Aaron and Israel), and the laity grouped after the biblical model into 
twelve tribes. This structure is described in the War Scroll's account of 
reconstituted Temple worship as it was expected to be at the end of 

... the twelve chief Priests shall minister at the daily sacrifice before God 
... Below them ... shall be the chiefs of the Levifes fothe number of twete, 
one for each fribe ... Below fhem shall be the chiefs of the tribes ... 

f/Q/wrr, 1-3) 

still following the biblical pattern, sectarian society (apart from the tribe 
of Levi) was further distinguished into units of Thousands, Hundreds, 
Fifties and Tens (IQS 11, 21; CD XIII, 1-2). To what extent these 
figures are symbolical, we do not know, but it is improbable that 
'Thousands' amounted to anything more than a figure of speech. It is 
not irrelevant, in this connection, to note that the archaeologists have 
deduced from the fact that the cemetery contained 1 ,100 graves, dug 
over the course of roughly 200 years, that the population of Qumran, an 
establishment of undoubted importance, can never have numbered 
more than 150 to 200 souls at a time. Also, it should be borne in mind 
that the total membership of the Essene sect in the first century CE 
only slightly exceeded 'four thousand' (Josephus, Antiquities X\/\\\, 21). 

To consider now the two types separately, the 'monastic' 
brotherhood at Qumran alludes to itself in the Community Rule as 'the 
men of holiness' and 'the men of perfect holiness', and to the sect as 
'the Community and 'Council of the Community or 'the men of the 
Law' (4QS'^=4Q258). The establishment was devoted exclusively to 
religion. Work must have formed a necessary part of their existence; it 
is obvious from the remains discovered at Qumran that they farmed, 
made pots, cured hides and reproduced manuscripts. But no 
indication of this appears in the documents. It is said only that they 
were to 'eat in common and bless in common and deliberate in 
common' (IQS VI, 2-3), living in such a way as to 'seek God with a 
whole heart and soul' (IQS 1, 1-2). Perfectly obedient to each and 
every one of the laws of Moses and to all that was commanded by the 
Prophets, they were to love one another and to share with one another 
their 'knowledge, powers and possessions' (IQS I, II). They were to be 
scrupulous in their observance of the times appointed for prayer, and 
for every other aspect of a liturgical existence conducted apart from 
the Temple of Jerusalem and its official cult. 'Separate from the 
habitation of unjust men' (IQS VIII, 13), they were to study the Torah in 
the wilderness and thereby 'atone for the Land' (IQS VIII, 6, 1 0) and its 
wicked men, for whom they were to rxjurish an 'everlasting hatred' 
(IQS ix, 21), though this went together with a firm conviction that their 

fate was in God's hands alone. And the poet proclaims in the Hymn 
with which the Community Rule ends: 

I will payto no man the reward of ey'l; 
I will pursue him with goodness. 
Forjudgementof all the living is with God 
Aid it is He who will render to man his reward. 

(IQSx, 17-18) 

They were to be truthful, humble, just, upright, charitable arxJ modest. 
They were to 

watch in community for a third of every night of the year, to read the Book 
and to study the Law and to bless together. 

(IQS VI, 7-8) 

These are, as may be seen, mostly the sort of recommendations to be 
expected of men devoting themselves to contemplation. A point to 
bear in mind, however, is that the contemplative life is not a regular 
feature of Judaism. An additional distinctive trait of these sectaries is 
that another qualification was required of them besides holiness: they 
were expected to become proficient in the knowledge of the 'two 
spirits' in which all men 'walk', the spirits of truth and falsehood, and to 
learn how to discriminate between them. They were taught in the so- 
called 'instruction concerning the Two Spirits', the earliest Jewish 
theological tractate incorporated into the Community Rule, how to 
recognize a 'son of Light' or potential 'son of Light, and how to 
distinguish a 'son of Darkness' belonging to the lot of Belial (IQS III, 13- 
IV, 25; cf. below pp. 73-4). 

The hierarchy at Qumran was strict and formal, from the highest level 
to the lowest. Every sectary was inscribed in 'the order of his rank' 
(IQS VI, 22) - the term 'order' recurs constantly - and was obliged to 
keep to it in all the Community meetings and at table, an order that 
was subject to an annual review on the Feast of the Renewal of the 
Covenant. But after democratic beginnings, with the 'Congregation' 
(literally, 'the Many) as such forming the supreme authority, testified to 

by what seems to be the earliest formulation of the communal 
constitution (cf. 4QS'''''=4Q256, 258, see below, pp. 118-19), the 
'sons of Zadok, the priests', members of the 'Zadokite' high-priestly 
family, took over the leadership of the sect. Although nothing to this 
effect is mentioned specifically in the Community Rule, the superior, 
the so-called mebaqqer or Guardian, was undoubtedly one of their 
number, as was the Bursar of the Congregation entrusted with 
handling the material affairs of the Community In their hands lay the 
ultimate responsibility for decisions on matters of doctrine, discipline, 
purity and impurity, and in particular everything pertaining to 'justice 
and property" (IQS IX, 7). It was also a basic rule of the order that a 
priest was required to be present at any gathering of ten or more 
members who were meeting for debate, Bible study or prayer. A priest 
was to recite the grace before the common meals and to pronounce 
blessings (IQS VI, 3-8). He was no doubt the man whose duty it was to 
study the Law continually (IQS VI, 7; VIII, 11-12). One interesting 
feature of the priesthood at Qumran is that their precedence was 
absolute. In Judaism as represented by the Mishnah, the priest is 
superior to the Levite, the Levite to the Israelite, and the Israelite to the 
'bastard' (Horayot III, 8). But the priestly precedence is conditional. If 
the 'bastard' is a man of learning, we are told, and the High Priest an 
uneducated 'boor', 'the bastard ... precedes the High Priest'. 

The highest office was vested in the person of the Guardian, known 
also, it would seem, as the 'IVlaster' {maskil). The Community was to 
be taught by him how to live in conformity with the 'Book of the 
Community Rule' (IQS 1,1; 4QS^=4Q255), and to be instructed by him 
in the doctrine of the 'two spirits'. He was to preside over assemblies, 
giving leave to speak to those wishing to do so (IQS VI, 11-13). He 
was to assess, in concert with the brethren, the spiritual progress of 
the men in his charge and rank them accordingly (IQS VI, 21-2). And 
negatively he was not to dispute with 'the men of the Pit (or Dawn)' 
and not to transmit to them the sect's teachings (IQS IX, 16-17). Of the 
sect's institutions, the most significant appears to have been the 
Council of the Community, or assembly of the Congregation. From a 
passage ordering all the members to sit in their correct places - 'the 
Priests shall sit first, and ttie elders second, and all the rest of the 

people according to their rark' (IQS VI, 8-9) - the Courrcil seems to 
have been a gathering of the whole community, under the priests and 
men of importance, marshalled by the Levites, and with the Guardian 
at the head. But in another text, generally held to be an early section, 
the rule is as follows: 

In the Council of the Community there shall be twel\« men and three 
Priests, perfectly \«rsecl in all that is re\fialed of the Law, whose wori<s 
shall be truth, righteousness, justice, ioving-l<indness and humility They 
shall preserve the faith in the Land with steadfastness and meekness and 
shall atone tor sin bythe practice of justice and bysuffering the sorrows of 
aflliction. They shall walk with all men according to the standard of truth 
and the rule of the time. 

(IQS VIII, 1-4) 

These three priests and twelve men are referred to also as 'fifteen 
men' in a hybrid version of the Community Rule and the Damascus 
Document (4Q265 fr 7 ii). Their presence was obviously essential: 
both documents state that when they 'are in Israel, the Council of the 
Community shall be established in truth' (IQS VIII, 4-5; 4Q265 fr. 7 11, 7- 
8). But whether they formed the nucleus of the sect as a whole, or the 
minimum quorum of the leadership of the Community symbolically 
portrayed as consisting of the twelve tribes and the three Levitical 
clans, or a special elite within the Council designated elsewhere 'the 
Foundations of the Community", must be left open to question. The 
purpose of the meetings is in any case clear It was to debate the Law, 
to discuss their current business, to select or reject newcomers under 
the guidance of the Guardian, to hear charges against offenders and 
to conduct a yearly inquiry into the progress of every sectary, 
promoting or demoting them in rank, again under the Guardian's 
supervision (IQS v, 23-4; VI, 13-23). During their sessions, order and 
quiet were to prevail: a person wishing to offer his opinion or ask a 
question was to crave permission in a prescribed way. He was to rise 
and tell the Guardian and the Congregation, 'I have something to say 
to the Congregation' and then wait for their consent before going 
ahead (IQS VI, 8-13). 
The procedure followed in inquiries into infringements of the Law 

and the sect's Rule has been preserved, and the list of faults with their 
corresponding sentences tells us more about the mentality of the Dead 
Sea ascetics than any isolated exposition of their doctrine and 
principles can do. 

Beginning with the blackest sins: any transgression, by commission 
or omission, of 'one word of the Law of Moses, on any point whatever' 
earned outright expulsion. No former companion might from then on 
associate with the sinner In any way at ail (IQS VIII, 21-4). Expulsion 
followed, secondly, the pronouncement for any reason whatever of the 
divine Name: 

If any man has uttered ttie [Most] N^nerable Name, ewn though 
friMolously or as a result of shock, or for any other reason whatever, while 
reading the Book or blessing, he shall be dismissed and shall return ... no 

(IQS VI, 27-VII, 2) 

Thirdly, a sectary was expelled for slandering the Congregation (IQS 
VII, 16). Fourthly, he was sent away for rebelling against the 
'Foundations' of the Community: 

VVhoe\«r has murmured against the authority of the Community shall be 
e;^elled and shall not return. 

(IQS VII, 17) 

Lastly where a man had been a member of the Council for at least ten 
^ars and had then defected to 'walk in the stubbornness of his hearf , not 
only was he to be expelled, but the same judgement was extended to any 
of his former colleagues who might take pity on him and share with him 
their food or money 

(IQS VII, 22-3). 

The remaining oftences are of a kind that might be confessed and 
censured in any Christian religious order of today, though one cannot 
perhaps say the same of the penances imposed for them. 

In a descendinq order of gravity: a man who 'betrayed the truth and 

walked in the stubbornness of his heart' (IQS VII, 18-21), or 
transgressed the Mosaic Law Inadvertently (IQS VIII, 24-IX, I), was 
visited with two years of penance. He was to lose his rank and during 
the first year be separated from the 'purity of ttie Congregation, and 
during the second year, from its 'drink'. Both notions will be developed 
presently. He was then to be re-examined by the Congregation and 
subsequently returned to his place In the order. 

Lying in matters of property, In all probability the partial concealment 
of personal possessions, earned exclusion from 'purity for a year and 
a cut by one quarter in the food ration (IQS VI, 25-7). The penal code of 
4Q265, which closely resembles that of IQS, prescribes for deceiving 
a companion an exclusion for six months and a halving of the guilty 
person's food portion. Disrespect to a companion of higher rank, 
rudeness and anger towards a priest, slander and deliberate insult, all 
earned one year of penance and exclusion from 'purity (IQS VI, 25-7; 
VII, 2-5). After this, tine sentences decrease to six montlns, three 
months, thirty days and ten days of penance. 

For lying deliberately and similarly deceiving by word or deed, for 
bearing malice unjustly, for taking revenge, for murmuring against a 
companion unjustly and also for going 'naked before his companion, 
without having been obliged to do so' - a curious proviso - tlie sectary 
was to atone for six montlis. For failing to care for a companion and for 
speaking foolishly: three montlis. For falling asleep during a meeting of 
the Council, for leaving the Council while members were standing (in 
prayer?), for spitting in Council, for 'guffawing foolishly, for being 'so 
poorly dressed that when drawing his hand from beneath his garment 
his nakedness has been seen': thirty days. The penal code contained 
in another of the Cave 4 manuscripts of the Damascus Document 
(4Q266) mentions also ten days' penance, in addition to the thirty 
days' expulsion inflicted on someone who has fallen asleep during a 
meeting! And for leaving an assembly three times without reason, for 
interrupting another while speaking, for gesticulating with the left hand: 
ten days (IQS VII, 15). A fascinating fragment (4Q477) has preserved 
in writing cases of misbehaviour by named sectaries: 'Yohanan son of 
...' was 'short-tempered'; 'Hananiah Notos' led astray 'the spirit of the 
Community and either pampered himself or sliowed favouritism to his 

near kin(?); atxJ another 'Hananiah son of Sim[on]' 'loved' something 
no doubt prohibited. 

That the common table was of high importance to Qumran daily iife 
is evident from the ^ct that only the fully professed and the faultless, 
that is to say those who were 'inscribed ... for purity' and not 
subsequently disqualified, were allowed to sit at It. There Is no explicit 
mention of a ritual bath preceding the meals, but from various 
references to purification by water, as well as the presence of bathing 
installations at Qumran, It is likely that the sectaries immersed 
themselves before eafing as did the Essenes acconding to Josephus 
{War 11, 129). But little more Is learnt of the meal Itself from the 
Community Rule than that when the table had been 'prepared for 
eating, and tfie new wine for drinking', the priest was to be the first to 
bless the food and drink (IQS VI, 4-5). The implication would be that 
after him the others did the same, an inference supported by the 
iVlessianic Rule, where a similar meal is described attended by two 
iVlessiahs (IQSa ii, 17-21). Some uncertainty surrounds the meaning of 
'new wine', but it would seem from the use in the Scrolls (with the 
exception of the Temple Scroll), of the alternative Hebrew words for 
wine - tirosh and yayin - that the latter often has pejorative 
connotations. iVIore likely than not, the 'wine' drunk by the sectaries, 
'the drink of the Congregation', was unfermented grape-juice. 

Another topic to be considered under the heading of communal iife 
and institutions is the crucial one of induction into the sect. And if it 
should seem strange to place it towards the end rather than at the 
beginning, the explanation is that with an idea, however sketchy of 
what was entailed by adherence to the movement, the process by 
which it admitted a Jew Into its company becomes easier to follow. 
According to the regime adopted at Qumran, a person desiring to join 
the sect remained on probation, certainly for two years and possibly for 
three or more. His first move was to appear before the Guardian 'at 
the head of the Congregation', meaning no doubt during a session of 
the Congregation, who inquired into his principles to discover if he was 
a suitable postulant, if they were satisfied, he 'entered the Covenant' 
(IQS Vi, 13-15). That is to say, he solemnly swore there and ttien to 
adhere to the Torah as the sect interpreted it, vowing 

by a binding oath to return with all his heart and soul to e\«ry 
commandment of ttie Law of Ntoses in accordance with all ttiat has been 
revealed of it to the sons of Zadok... the Keepers of the Cownant. 

(IQS V, 7-9) 

After a further period of unspecifiecl length, during which he received 
instruction from the Guardian 'in aii the ruies of the Community', he 
appeared orxie more before the Congregation, who confirmed him as 
a mvice or dismissed him. But although he was now accepted into the 
Council of the Community, he was nevertheless still not admitted to 
'purity' for another full year. The same rule applied also in the group 
represented by 4Q265 fr. 1 . 

This concept of pure things {tohorah, taharah or tohomt, literally 
'purity' or 'purities') needs some comment. It seems to designate here 
as in rabbinic literature ritually pure food (cf. also 4Q274 I), as well as 
the vessels and utensils in which it is contained or cooked. It includes 
also garments. The tohorot, moreover, are distinguished by the rabbis 
Irom mashqin, liquids, the latter being considered much more 
susceptible to contract impurity than solid comestibles. Hence, in 
ordering the novice not to touch the pure things of the Congregation, 
the Community forbade him all contact with its pots, plates, bowls and 
necessarily the food that they held. He was not, in effect, to attend the 
common table and had to eat elsewhere. Although the context is very 
different, a parallel rule figures in the Temple Scroll (LXIII, 13-14), 
prohibiting a Gentile woman married to her Jewish captor to touch his 
tohorah for seven years. 

During this first year of the novitiate, the newcomer could not share 
the sect's property At a third Community inquiry, he was examined for 
'his understanding and observance of the Law' and, if his progress 
was judged to be adequate, he handed over his money and 
belongings to the 'Bursar of the Congregation', but they were set aside 
and not yet absorbed into Community ownership. During this second 
year, furthermore, the ban on touching the pure things was relaxed, but 
he could still not touch liquids, the 'Dnrk [mashqeh] of the 
Congregation' (IQS VI, 20-21 ; VII, 20; cf. also 4Q284 I). Finally, with the 

second year over, the novice had once more to undergo an 
examination, after which, 'according to ttie judgement of the 
Congregation', he was at iast inscribed among the brethren in the 
order of his ranl< 'for the Law, and for justice, and for purity. Also, his 
property was amaigamated with theirs and he possessed the right 
from ttien on to speal< his mirxl in the Council of the Community (IQS 
VI, 13-23). 

In sum, this strict and extended curriculum fails into two stages. The 
postulant is first brought into the Covenant, swearing total fidelity to the 
Mosaic Law as interpreted by the sect's priestly teachers, and to 
'separate from all the men of injustice who walk in ttie way of 
wicl<edness' (IQS v, 10-11). He then secondly embarks on a course of 
training as a preliminary to joining the 'holy Congregation' (IQS v, 20). 
In other words, entering the Covenant and entering ttie Community was 
not one act, but two. 

It has long been debated whether the Qumran sectaries were 
married or celibate. From the image of their life projected so far on the 
basis of the Community Rule, few will probably disagree that the idea 
of the presence of women among them appears Incongruous. The 
impression received is that of a wholly masculine society: indeed, they 
were actually enjoined not to 'follow a sinful heart and lustful eyes, 
committing all manner of evil' (IQS 1, 6). In further support of the 
argument for celibacy the word ishah, woman, occurs nowhere in the 
Community Rule. Or rather, to be more exact, it Is encountered once in 
the final Hymn, in the cliche, 'one born of woman' (IQS xi, 21). 
IMoreover, against the Cave 4 Damascus Document regulation 
(4Q270 fr. 7), which envisages a membership of married people and 
imposes the penalty of expulsion on anyone murmuring against 'the 
Fathers' but only a ten-day penance for murmuring against 'the 
IVIothers', the Community Rule speaks only of the crime of murmuring 
against 'the authority of the Community" (IQS VII, 17). Silence 
concerning the presence of women seems therefore deliberate. Yet 
the fact cannot be overlooked that although in the main graveyard itself 
the twenty-six tombs so far opened at random (out of 1,100) have all 
contained adult male skeletons, the archaeologists have uncovered on 
the periptieries of ttie cemetery ttie bones of six women and three 

children too (R. de Vaux, Archaeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls, 47- 
8; J.-P. Humbert, Fouilles de Kh. Qumran, 346-52). A more extensive 
exploration of thie cemetery would eliminate most of these 

The Damascus Document, the hybrid Community Rule-Damascus 
Document text (4Q265) and the Temple Scroll, as well as the 
Messianic Rule and occasionally the War Rule and MMT, are 
concerned with a style of religious existence quite at variance with that 
at Qumran. In the 'towns' or 'camps', as the Damascus Document 
terms them (CD XII, 19, 23), adherents of the sect lived an urban or 
village life side by side with, yet apart from, their fellow Jewish and 
Gentile neighbours. They had wives and reared children, but clearly 
their sexual morality followed particularly strict rules. A Cave 4 
Damascus Document manuscript lays down that 'whoever has 
approached his wife, not according to the rules, (thus) fornicating, he 
shall leave and will not return again' (4Q270 fr. 7 i). The married 
sectaries employed servants, engaged in commerce and trade (even 
with Gentiles), tended cattle, grew vines and corn in the surrounding 
fields, and discharged their duties to the Temple by way of offerings, 
but in doing so they were obliged like their brothers in the desert to 
show absolute obedience to the Law and to observe the sect's 
'appointed times'. There is no indication, however, that the continual 
and intensive study of the Torah played any part in their lives. Nor in 
their regard is there any mention of instruction in the doctrine of the two 
spirits, as membership of the group was a birthright and not the 
outcome of a process of selection and training. 

How many of these people, if any lived in Jerusalem is not known, 
but they must at least have visited the city from time to time, since a 
statute forbids them to enter the 'house of worship' (possibly the 
Temple) in a state of ritual uncleanness, or to 'lie with a woman in the 
city of the Sanctuary to defile the city of the Sanctuary with their 
uncleanness' (CD I, 22; XII, 1;TSXLV, 11-12). 

Little is revealed in the Damascus Document of how the life span of 
the individual progressed in the 'towns', and for this we have to turn to 
the IVIessianic Rule in the hope that it reflects contemporary actuality 
as well as the ideal life of an age to come. 

According to the latter Rule, members of the Covenant were 
permitted to marry at the age of twenty, when they were estimated to 
have reached adulthood and to 'l<now [good] and evil' (IQSa 1, 9-11). 
For the subsequent five years they were then allowed to 'assist' (as 
opposed to tal<ing an active part) at hearings and judgements. At 
twenty-five, they advanced one grade further and qualified to 'wort< in 
the service of the Congregation' (IQSa 1, 12-13). At thirty, they were 
regarded as at last fuiiy mature and couid 'participate' in the affairs of 
the tribunals and assemblies, taking their place among the higher 
ranl<s of the sect, the 'chiefs of the thousands of Israel, the chiefs of the 
Hundreds, Fifties and Tens, the Judges and the officers of their tribes, 
in all their families, [under the authority] of the sons of [Aarjon the 
Priests' (IQSa 1, 8-16). As office-holders, they were expected to 
perform their duties to the best of their ability and were accorded more 
honour or less in conformity with their 'understanding' and the 
'perfection' of their 'way. As they grew older, so their burdens became 
lighter (iQSa 1, 19). 

As at Qumran, supreme authority rested in the hands of the priests, 
and every group of ten or more was to include a priest 'learned in the 
Bool< of iVIeditation' and to be 'ruled by him' (CD Xiii, 2-3). His 
precedence, on the other hand, is not represented as absolute in the 
'towns', it is explicitly stated that in the absence of a properly qualified 
priest, he was to be replaced by a Levite who would perform all the 
functions of a superior except those specially reserved in the Bible to 
the priesthood such as applying the laws of leprosy (CD Xiii, 3-7). The 
Cave 4 manuscripts of the Damascus Document (4Q266, 269, 272-3) 
describe at length the diagnosis of the onset and eventual cure of skin 
disease. Priests with speech defects, those who had been prisoners 
of war or had settled and been active among Gentiles were 
disqualified from performing priestly duties or eating 'sacred food' 
(4Q266 fr. 5). The Cave 4 version of the Damascus Document 
legislates also on agricultural priestly dues (4Q266fr. 6; 271fr. 2). 

As in the Community Rule, the head of the 'camp' is designated in 
the Damascus Document, as well as in 4QD^ (4Q266 fr. 5 i) and in the 
hybrid 4Q265 fr. 1 ii, as the mebaqqer or Guandian. He appears, 
however, not to be supported by a council. In fact, the words 'Council of 

the Community' are absent from this document apart from the 
transitional 4Q265 frs. 1 ii and 7 ii, where the use of the term is more 
generai in the first case and represents the ideal nucleus of the sect in 
the second. There is reference to the 'company of israei' , on the advice 
of which it would be licit to attacl< Gentiles (CD XII, 8), but this type of 
war council, mentioned also in the Messianic Rule (IQSa 1, 26), can 
surely have had nothing to do with the assemblies described in the 
Community Rule. (The only possible parallel is the 'council of Holiness' 
in CD XX, 24, in which a not strictly observant member was to be 
judged.) The Guardian of the 'camps', in any case, stands on his own 
as teacher arxl helper of his people. He stiall love them, writes the 

as a father lo\«s his children, and shall canythem in all their distress 
like a shepherd his sheep. He shall loosen all the fetters which bind them 
that in his Congregation there maybe none that are oppressed or brol<en. 

(CD XIII, 9-10) 

The Guardian was to examine newcomers to his congregation, though 
not, it should be noted, to determine their 'spirit', and was to serve as 
the deciding authority on the question of their admission (cf also 
4Q265 fr. 1 ii). These offices are of course already familiar to us from 
the Community Rule. But an additional task of the mebaqqer in the 
towns was to ensure that no friendly contact occurred between his 
congregation and anyone outside the sect. Whatever exchanges took 
place had to be paid for; and even these transactions were to be 
subject to his consent (CD XIII, 14-16). 

Instead of dealing with offenders in Community courts of inquiry, the 
towns had their tribunals for hearing cases, equipped moreover with 
'judges'. These were to be ten in number, elected for a specific term 
and drawn from the tribes of Levi, Aaron and Israel: four priests and 
Levites, and six laymen (CD x, 4-7). They were to be not younger than 
twenty-five and not older than sixty - in the Messianic Rule, which also 
speaks of judges, ttie age-limits are thirty and sixty years (IQSa 1, IS- 
IS) - and were to be expert in biblical law and the 'constitutions of the 
Covenant'. The arrangemerrt would seem, in fact, to be fairly 

straightforward. Yet it is not entirely so. For exampie, it is evident that 
the Guardian was aiso impiicated in iegai matters; he had to determine 
whether a proper case had been made out against a sectary and 
whether it should be brought before the court (CD ix, 16-20), and in 
certain cases he appears to have imposed penalties on his own (CD 
XV, 13-14). The 'Priest overseeing the Congregation' of one of the 
Cave 4 fragments of the Damascus Document (4Q270 1r. 7 i-ii) 
appears to perform the same single judicial function as the Guardian in 
the case of an inadvertent sin. We are not told whether the ten judges 
sat together, whether they were all drawn from the locality in which they 
lived, or whether they travelled as it were on circuit as nowadays. The 
code of law they were expected to administer, as laid down In the 
Damascus Document, differs in content from that of the Community 
Rule. Furthermore, although, unlike the Qumran code, a sentence is 
prescribed only rarely sometimes it is the death penalty We have 
here, in addition to matters relating primarily to communal discipline to 
a large extent identical with the Community Rule, a more detailed 
sectarian reformulation of scriptural laws regulating Jewish life as 

The first group of statutes, concerned with vows, opens with the 
injunction that in order to avoid being put to death for the capital sin of 
uttering the names of God, the sectary must swear by the Covenant 
alone. Such an oath would be fully obligatory and might not be 
cancelled (CD XVI, 7-8). If he subsequently violated his oath, he would 
then have only to confess to the priest and make restitution (CD xv, 1- 
5). The sectary is also ordered not to vow to the altar articles acquired 
unlawfully or the food of his own house (CD xvi, 13-15), and not to 
make any vow 'in the fields' but always before the judges (CD IX, 9- 
10). He Is threatened with death if he 'vows another to destruction by 
the laws of the Gentiles' (CD IX, 1). As for the right conferred by the 
Bible on fathers and husbands to annul vows made by their daughters 
or wives, the Damascus Document limits it to the cancellation of oaths 
which should have never been made in the first place (CD XVI, 10-12; 
for a somewhat different rule, see TS Llll, 16-LIV, 5). It Is clearly stated 
that no accusation Is valid without prior warnings before witnesses 
(CD IX, 2-3). A record of reported moral failings (4Q477) has already 

been quoted (cf. above, pp. 31-2). 

A few ordinances are concerned with witnesses. No one under tlie 
age of twenty was to testify before the judges in a capital charge (CD 
ix, 23-X, 2). Aiso, whereas the normai bibiicai custom is that two or 
three witnesses are needed before any sentence can be pronounced 
(Deut. xix, 15; cf. also IIQTS LXI, 6-12), a single witness being quite 
unacceptable, unustestis nullus testis, sectarian law allowed the 
indictment of a man guilty of repeating the same capital offence on the 
testimony of single witnesses to the separate occasions on which it 
was committed, providing they reported it to the Guardian at once and 
that the Guardian recorded it at once in writing (CD IX, 17-20). With 
regard to capital cases, to which should be added apostasy in a state 
of demonic possession (CD XII, 2-3), the adultery of a betrothed girl 
(4Q159, fr 224, 10-11), slandering the people of Israel and treason 
(TS LXIV, 6-13), it is highly unlikely that either the Jewish or the Roman 
authorities would have granted any rights of execution to the sect. So 
this is probably part of the sect's vision of the future age, when it as 
Israel de jure would constitute de facto the government of the chosen 

The penal code of the Damascus Document (4Q270) stipulates 
irrevocable expulsion in the case of a man 'fornicating' with his wife. 
This may refer to illicit sexual relations with a menstruating woman or, 
perhaps more lil<ely, with a pregnant or post-menopausal woman 
since, as Josephus clearly states in connection with married Essenes, 
sex between spouses was licit only if it could result in conception (War 
11, 161). 

A section devoted to Sabbath laws displays a marked bias towards 
severity In time, rabbinic law developed the Sabbath rules in still 
greater detail than appears here, but the tendency is already manifest. 

The sectary was not only to abstain from labour 'on the sixth day 
from the moment when the sun's orb is distant by its own fullness from 
the gate (wherein it sinks)' (CD x, 15-16), he was not even to speak 
about work. Nothing associated with money or gain was to interrupt his 
Sabbath of rest (CD x, 18-19). No member of the Covenant of God 
was to go out of his house on business on the Sabbath. In fact, he was 
not to go out, for any reason, further than 1 ,000 cubits (about 500 

yards), though he could pasture his beast at a distance of 2,000 cubits 
from liis town (CD x, 21 ; XI, 5-6). He could not cook. He could not pick 
and eat fruit and other edible things 'lying in the fields'. He could not 
draw water and carry it away, but must drink where he found it (CD X, 
22-3). He could not strike his beast or reprimand his servant (CD XI, 6, 
12). He could not carry a child, wear perfume or sweep up the dust in 
his house (CD XI, 10-11). He could not assist his animals to give birth 
or help them if they fell into a pit; he could, however, pull a man out of 
water or fire without the help of a ladder or rope (CD xi, 13-14, 16-17). 
Interpreting the Bible restrictively (Lev. xxiii, 38), the secfs lawmaker 
(or makers) commanded him to offer no sacrifice on the Sabbath save 
the Sabbath burnt-offering, and never to send a gift to the Temple by 
the hand of one 'smitten with any uncleanness permitting him thus to 
defile the altar' (CD xi, 19-20). He was also never to have intercourse 
while inthe 'city of the Sanctuary (CD XII, 1-2; 1 1QTS XLV, 1-12). 

The punishment imposed for profaning the Sabbath and the feasts 
in any of these ways was not death as in the Bible (Num. XV, 35), nor 
even expulsion as in the Community Rule. It was seven years' 

It shall fall to men to keep him In custody find If he Is healed of his emor, 
they shall keep him In custody for sewn ^ars and he shall afterwards 
approach the Assembly. 

(CD XII, 4-6) 

In the last group, the ordinances appear to be only loosely connected, 
though some of them involve relations with the larger Jewish-Gentile 
world. One such forbids killing or stealing from a non-Jew, 'unless so 
advised by the company of Israel' (CD XII, 6-8). Another proscribes the 
sale to Gentiles of ritually pure beasts and birds, as well as the 
produce of granary and wine-press, in case they should blaspheme by 
offering them in heathen sacrifice. MMT further prohibits acceptance of 
offerings (wheat or meat) by Gentiles (4Q394 frs. 3-7). A ban is 
similarly laid on selling to Gentiles foreign servants converted to the 
Jewish faith (CD XII, 11). But in addition to these regulations affecting 
contacts with rran-Jews, a few are concerned with dietary restrictions. 


No man shall defile himself by eating any live creature or creeping thing, 
fix>m the lar>£ie of bees to all creatures which creep in water. 

(CD XII, 12-13) 

Others deal with the laws of purity (CD XII, 1 6-1 8) and purification (CD 
X, 10-13) and with uncleanness resulting from various sexual 
discharges and childbirth (4Q266 fr. 6 i-ii). Outside the Damascus 
Document, the B section of MMT (4Q394-5), 4QPurities (4Q274, 276- 
7, 284) and the Temple Scroll (11QTS XLV-LI) provide ample 
information on purity matters, including the law relative to the burning of 
the 'red heifer' whose ashes were a necessary ingredient for the 
making of the 'water for (removing) uncleanness' (MMT 4Q394 3-7 i, 
395; 4Q276-7). 

Two types of meeting are provided for, with equal laconism: the 
'assembly of the camp' presided over by a priest or a Levite and the 
'assembly of all the camps' (CD XIV, 3-6). Presumably the latter was 
the general convention of the whole sect held on the Feast of the 
Renewal of the Covenant, the annual great festival alluded to in 4QD 
(266, 270), when both the 'men of holiness' and the 'men of the 
Covenanf confessed their former errors and committed themselves 
once more to perfect obedience to the Law and the sect's teachings. 
According to the available texts, the sectaries were to be mustered 
and inscribed in their rank by name, the priests first, the Levites 
second, the Israelites third. A fourth group of proselytes is unique to the 
'towns', but as has been observed these were Gentile slaves 
converted to Judaism. A further remark that in this order the secf s 
members were to 'be questioned on all matters' leads one to suppose 
that the allusion must be to the yeariy inquiry into their spiritual 
progress mentioned in the Community Rule (CD XIV, 3-6). 

Two Cave 4 manuscripts of the Damascus Document describe the 
expulsion ceremony of an unfaithful member. He was cursed and 
dismissed by the Priest overseeing the Congregation and cursed also 
by all the inhabitants of the camps. Should the latter maintain contact 

with the renegade, they would forfeit their own membership of the sect 
(4Q266fr. 11 ii; 270fr. 7 i-ii). 

Apart from these familiar directions, we learn only that the priest who 
mustered ttie gathering was to be between thirty and sixty years old 
and, needless to say, 'learned in the Book of Meditation'. The 
'Guardian of all the camps', in his turn, was to be between thirty and 
fifty, arxJ to have 'mastered all the secrets of men and the language of 
all their clans'. He was to decide who was to be admitted, and anything 
connected with a 'suit or judgement' was to be brought to him (CD XIV, 

As for the initiation of new members, the Statutes appear to 
legislate for young men reaching their majority within the brotherhood 
and for recruits from outside. This is not entirely clear, but the 
instruction that an aspirant was not to be informed of the sect's rules 
until he had stood before the Guardian can hardly have applied to a 
person brought up within its close circle (CD xv, 5-6, 1 0-1 1 ). 

Of the sect's own young men the Damascus Document writes 

find all those who ha\« entered the Co\finant, granted to all Israel for 
e\er, shall make their children who have reached the age of enrolment, 
swear with the oath of the Co\«nant 

(CD XV, 5-6) 

The Messianic Rule is more discursive. There, enrolment into the sect 
is represented as the climax of a childhood and youth spent in study 
Teaching of the Bible and in the 'precepts of the Covenant' began long 
before the age of ten, at which age a boy embarked on a further ten 
years of instruction in the statutes. It was not until after all this that he 
was finally ready. 

From [his] VDuth theyshaii instruct him in the Booi< of IVfedltation and shali 
teach him, according to his age, the precepts of the Ckjvenant. Tfiey [shaii 
beedujcated in their statutes for ten years the age of twenty ^ears [he 
shall t>e] enrolled, that he may enter upon his allotted dut'es In the midst 
of his family(and) be joined to the lioly congregation. 

(IQSa 1, 6-9) 

The newcomer from outside who repented of his 'corrupted way was 
to be enrolled 'with the oath of the Covenant' on the day that he spol<e 
to the Guardian, but no sectarian statute was to be divulged to him 'lest 
when examining him the Guardian be deceived by him' (CD xv, 7-11). 
Nevertheless, if he broke that oath, 'retribution' would be exacted of 
him. The text subsequently becomes fragmentary and unreliable, but 
he is told where to find the liturgical calendar which his oath obliges 
him to follow. 

As for the exact determination of their times to which 
Israel turns a blind eye, behold it is strictly defined in the 
Book of the Divisions of the Times into their Jubilees and 



It should be added here that one big difference between the 
organization of the brethren in the towns and those of the 'monastic' 
settlement is that new members were not required to surrender their 
property. There was none of the volurrtary communism found at 
Qumran. On the other hand, where the desert sectaries practised 
common ownership, those of the towns contributed to the assistance 
of tfieir fellows in need. Every man able to do so was ordered to hand 
over a minimum of two days' wages a month to a charitable fund, and 
from It tfie Guardian and the judges distributed help to the orphans, the 
poor, the old and sick, to unmarried women without support and to 
prisoners held in foreign hands and in need of redemption (CD XIV, 

When the two varieties of sectarian life are compared, we find many 
similarities, especially since the fragments of 4QD and 4Q265 have 
become accessible, but some of the differences still remain striking. In 
the desert of Qumran men lived together In seclusion; In the towns they 
were grouped in families, surrounded by non-members with whom they 
were In Inevitable though exiguous contact. The desert brotherhood 
was to keep apart from the Temple in Jerusalem until the restoration of 

the true cult in the seventh year of the eschatological war; the town 
sectaries participated in worship there. The judges of the towns had no 
counterparts at Qumran. The Qumran Guardian was supported by a 
Council; the town Guardians acted independently Unfaithful desert 
sectaries were sentenced to irrevocable excommunication, or to 
temporary exclusion from the common life, or to suffer lighter 
penances; the penal code concerned with the towns envisages also 
the death penalty (whether actually executed or not) as well as 
corrective custody The common table and the 'purity associated with 
it played an essential role at Qumran; in connection with the towns the 
common meal, but not the pure food, goes unmentioned. Furthermore, 
at Qumran all the new recruits came from outside; in the towns, some 
were converts but others were the sons of sectaries. The desert 
novices underwent two years of training and were instructed in the 
doctrine of the 'two spirits'; the towns' converts were subjected to 
neither experience. In the desert, property was owned in common; in 
the towns, it was not. And last but not least, the desert community 
appears to have practised celibacy whereas the town sectaries 
patently did not. 

Yet despite the dissimilarities, at the basic level of doctrine, aims 
and principles, a perceptible bond links the brethren of the desert with 
those of the towns. They both claim to represent the true Israel. They 
both are led by priests, Zadokite priests according to 1QS, the 
Damascus Document and the Messianic Rule, but not 4QS''(=4Q256), 
4QS^ (=4Q258) and MMT^ Both form units of Thousands, Hundreds, 
Fifties and Tens, both insist on a wholehearted return to the Mosaic 
Law in accordance with their own particular Interpretation of it. They 
are both governed by priests (or Levltes). The principal superior, 
teacher and administrator of both Is known by the unusual title of 
mebaqqer In both cases, initiation into the sect Is preceded by entry 
into the Covenant, sworn by oath. Both groups convene yearly to 
review the order of precedence of their members after an inquiry into 
the conduct of each man during the previous twelve months. Above all, 
both embrace the same 'unorthodox' liturgical calendar that sets them 
apart from the rest of Jewry. 

There can be only one logical conclusion: this was a single religious 

movement with two branches. It does not, however, answer all our 
questions, it does not tell us in particular whether the differentiation 
resulted from a relaxation or from a hardening of the original ascetic 
rules. Neithier are we told wfiether the sectaries of desert and towns 
maintained regular contact among themselves. After all, the history of 
religions furnishes scores of examples of sister sects which turned into 
mortal enemies. Did the Qumran and towns fellowships profess and 
practise unity? A few vital clues suggest that they did. 

One IrKlication of a living relationship between the two groups 
derives from the Qumran library itself. In it were discovered no less 
than ten copies of the Damascus Document and other writings 
reflecting the same form of life. It seems hardly lii<ely that they would 
have figured so prominently among the Qumran literary treasures if 
they had been the rule bool<s of some rival institution. Besides, there 
was no trace of any other booi< in the caves relating to an opposing 
religious faction except perhaps in the shape of rebuttal in IVIIVIT. 
Another pointer towards unity appears in the passage of the 
Damascus Document outlining the procedure for the 'assembly of all 
the camps' and prescribing that the members were to be 'inscribed by 
name' in hierarchical rani<. This clause corresponds exactly to the 
statute in the Community Rule ordaining a yearly rani<ing of the 
sectaries (IQS 11,1 9-23), with a solemn ritual for the Renewal of the 
Covenant (for an analysis of the rite, see pp. 80-81 ). This leads us to 
suppose that the Feast of the Covenant, when the desert brethren held 
their annual spiritual survey was also the occasion for that of the 
towns. Can we go further still and establish that the two ceremonies 
tooi< place, not only at the same time, but at the same place? In effect, 
the literary and archaeological evidence tends to support the theory 
that the 'assembly of all the camps', identical with the yearly assembly 
of the Qumran branch, gathered at Qumran. 

The first clue turns on the qualifications of the mebaqqer of the 
Community Rule and the Damascus Document respectively. As may 
be remembered, the superior at Qumran was required to be expert in 
recognizing 'the nature of all the children of men according to the i<ind 
of spirit which they possess' (IQS 111, 13-14), while the mebaqqeroi 
the towns was to be concerned rather more with a man's 'deeds', 

'possessions', 'ability', etc., than with his inner spirit. When, however, 
the Damascus Document describes the attributes needed of the 
'Guardian of all the camps', what do we find but a reformulation of 
those accredited to the superior of the desert community, that he 
shouid krK>w 'all the secrets of men and all the languages of their 
clans'? It would emerge from this, therefore, that the Guardian of all the 
camps and the Guardian at Qumran were one arKi the same person. 
The next hint comes from the fact that the Damascus Document is 
directed to both desert and town sectaries. As an example, the 
passage from the Exhortation advising men to choose whatever is 
pleasing to God and to reject whatever he hates, 'that you may walk 
perfectly in all His ways arxl not follow after thoughts of the guilty 
inclination and after eyes of lusf (CD 11, 15-16), seems to be 
addressed to celibates. Yet in this very same document we later come 
upon injunctions aimed explicitly at non-celibates: 

And if they live in camps according to the rule of the Land, marrying and 
begetting children, they shall walk according to the Law and according to 
the statute concerning binding vans, according to the rule of the Law 
which savB, Befueen a man and his vwfe and belneen a latierandhis son 
(Num.XX)^ 17). 

(CD VII, 6-9) 

The Exhortation would seem in short to be a sermon intended for 
delivery on a certain occasion to married and unmarried members of 
the sect; and as its theme is perseverance in the Covenant, the 
appropriate setting would be the Feast of the Renewal of the Covenant 
in the third month (4Q266 fr. II; 270 fr 7 i-ii), i.e. the Feast of Weeks or 
Pentecost (see below, pp. 79-80), and the venue, Qumran. 

These literary pointers are supported by two archaeological finds. 
Firstly, the twenty-six deposits of animal bones buried on tine Qumran 
site - goats, sheep, lambs, calves, cows or oxen - have for long 
intrigued sctxjiars. Can J. T. Milik be correct in identifying them as the 
remains of meals served to large groups of pilgrims in the Qumran 
mother-house of the sect (Ten Years of Discovery in the Wilderness 
of Judaea, p. 117)? Naturally, he too connects the gathering with the 

Covenant festival. 

The second archiaeological clue also Is concerned with bones. The 
skeletons of four women and one child, and possibly of two further 
female bodies and those of two children, were found in the extension 
of the Qumran cemetery. Now, if the Renewal of the Covenant was 
attended by sectaries from the towns and their families, this may well 
account for the presence of dead women and children among the 
othen/vise male si<eietons of the graveyard proper. 

Drawing the threads of these various arguments together, there 
would seem to be little doubt not only that the desert and town 
sectaries were united In doctrine and organization, but that they 
remained in actual and regular touch with each other, under the 
ultimate administrative and spiritual authority of the shadowy figure of 
the Priest, of whom we hear so little, and his dominant partner, the 
Qumran Guardian, Guardian of all the camps. Qumran, it seems, was 
the seat of the sect's hierarchy and also the centre to which all those 
turned who professed allegiance to the Council of the Covenant. 


The Essenes 

Prior to Qumran, the primary sources concerning the Essenes, a 
Jewish religious community flourishing during the last two centuries of 
the Second Temple era (c. 150 BCE-70 CE), were furnished by the 
Greek writings of two Jewish authors, Philo of Alexandria (That Every 
Good Man Should be Free, 75-91 ; Apology for the Jem, quoted in 
Eusebius, Praeparaf/o evangelica VIII, 6-7) and Flavius Josephus 
{War 11, ^^9S^■, Antiquities XVIII, 18-22), and by the Roman 
geographer and naturalist, Pliny the Elder, who left a short but very 
important notice in La\in (Natural History v, 17, 4[73]). For a more 
detailed account, see Geza Vermes and Martin Goodman, The 

Essenes According to the Classical Sources (Sheffield, 1989). 
Despite the apparent importance attributed to it by Philo, Josephus 
and Pliny, the sect is not explicitly mentioned either in the New 
Testament or in rabbinic literature. There is no general agreement 
regarding the meaning of the group's name: Essaioi or Essenoi in 
Greel<, and Esseni in Latin. The designation may signify 'the Pious', or 
'the Healers', devoted to the cure of body and soul. If the latter 
interpretation is adopted, it provides a parallel to the Greek 
Therapeutai, the title given by Philo to an Egyptian-Jewish ascetic 
society akin to the Essenes (ci.HJP 11, 593-7; Vermes-Goodman, 
The Essenes ... , 15-17). There are a number of other, less well- 
established, explanations. 

The membership of the Palestinian group exceeded four thousand. 
Josephus and Philo locate them in Judaean towns; Pliny refers only to 
a single Essene settlement in the wilderness between Jericfio and 

Individual congregations, directed by superiors, resided in 
commonly occupied houses. Initiation consisted of one year of 
probation, and two years of further training, leading to full table- 
fellowship on swearing an oath of loyalty to the sect. Only adult men 
qualified according to Philo and Pliny but Josephus reports that boys 
were also trained by them. Serious disobedience resulted in expulsion 
from the order. 

One of the principal characteristics of the Essenes was common 
ownership of property New members handed over their belongings to 
the superiors, who collected also the wages earned by every sectary. 
Agriculture was the main Essene occupation. Having renounced 
private possessions, the members received all that they needed: food, 
clothes, care. Further peculiarities included the wearing of white 
garments; ritual bathing before meals which were given only to 
initiates, and cooked and blessed by priests; the rejection of animal 
sacrifice and of oaths to support their statements, and, above all, of 
marriage. Josephus, however, admits that one Essene branch 
adopted the married state as long as sex was used only for the 
purpose of procreation. 

Theologically, they showed extreme reverence for the Law and were 

famous for their strictest observance of the Sabbath. Their esoteric 
teachings were recorded in secret bool<s. Experts in the healing of 
body and soul, they also excelled in prophecy They preferred belief in 
Fate to freedom of the will and, rejecting the notion of bodily 
resurrection, envisaged a purely spiritual afterlife. 

Essenes and Qumran 

The common opinion identifying or closely associating the Qumran 
sectaries with the Essenes is based on three principal considerations. 

1. There is no better site than Qumran to correspond to Pliny's 
settlement between Jericho and Engedi. 

2. Chronologically Essene activity placed by Josephus in the 
period between Jonathan Maccabaeus (c. 150 BCE) and the 
first Jewish war (66-70 CE) and the sectarian occupation of the 
Qumran site coincide perfectly. 

3. The similarities of common life, organization and customs are 
so fundamental as to render the identification of the two bodies 
extremely probable as long as some obvious differences can 
be explained. 

A good many contradictions appear in the diverse sources and are not 
simply due to a lack of harmony between the Scrolls and the Graeco- 
Latin documents. Thus Qumran attests both communism and private 
property; married and unmarried states. Likewise, Josephus speaks 
of celibate and married Essenes and, as has been noted (p. 38 
above), the prohibition to 'fornicate' with one's wife remarkably echoes 
the married Essenes' ban on marital sex when the woman was not in a 
state to conceive. ^ Furthermore, the Qumran movement incorporated 
two separate branches and the manuscripts reflect an organizational 
and doctrinal development of some two centuries. It would be 
unreasonable to expect complete agreement among the sources. It 
must finally be borne in mind that the sectarian compositions were 
written by initiates for insiders, whereas Pliny and Philo, and to some 
extent even Josephus (although he claims to have undergone a partial 

Essene education), are bound to have reproduced hearsay evidence, 
unlil<ely to echo fully the views and beliefs prevalent among members. 
Hence the identification of Essenism and the Qumran sect remains in 
my view the lil<eliestof all proposed solutions. 

///. The History of the Community 

The absence from the Dead Sea Scrolls of historical texts proper 
should not surprise us. Neither in the inter-Testamental period, nor in 
earlier biblical times, was the recording of history as we understand it 
a strong point among the Jews. Chroniclers are concerned not with 
factual information about bygone events, but with their religious 
significance. In Scripture, the 'secular' past is viewed and interpreted 
by the prophets as revealing God's pleasure or displeasure. Victory or 
defeat in war, peace or social unrest, abundance of harvest or famine, 
serve to demonstrate the virtue or sinfulness of the nation and to 
forecast its future destiny And when prophecy declined in the fifth 
century BCE, it was still not succeeded by a growth of historiography: 
only the memoirs of Ezra and Nehemiah and the retelling of the age- 
old stories of the kings of Israel and Judah in the Books of Chronicles 
belong to the historical genre. It was followed instead by 
eschatological speculation, by apocalyptic visions of the end of time, 
with tlieir awe-inspiring beaste and battles, and by announcements of 
the ultimate triumph of truth and justice in a future Kingdom of God. 

In the Scrolls, the apocalyptic compositions form part of this later 
tradition. On tlie other hand, apart from occasional snippets in a 
liturgical calendar (4Q322, 324), an odd poem alluding to 'King' 
Jonathan (40448), and deductive conclusions made from the 
comparative study of rules, most of the krwwiedge we possess of the 
sect's history originates from works of Bible interpretation. The 
Qumran writers, while meditating on the words of tfie Old Testament 
prophets, sought to discover in tliem allusions to tlieir own past, 
present and future. Convinced tfiat they were living in the last days, 
they read the happenings of their times as the fulfilment of biblical 

Yet all that these non-historical sources provide are fragments. Even 
with the help of the archaeological data from Qumran they cannot be 
made into a consistent and continuous narrative. For an understanding 

of the sect's past as it developed within the larger framework of late 
Second Temple Jewish history, we have to rely principally on Flavius 
Josephus, the Palestinian Jew who became a Greek man of letters, 
and on other Jewish Hellenists, such as the authors of the Books of the 
Maccabees, and Philo of Alexandria, all of whom inherited the Greek 
predilection for recording and interpreting the past and set out to 
depict the life of the Jews of Palestine in itself, and as part of the 
Graeco-Roman world, from the early second century BCE to the first 
anti-Roman war in 66-70 CE. It is only with the help of the wider canvas 
painted by these ancient writers that places can be found for the often 
cryptic historical allusions contained in the Scrolls. 

BCE-70 CE 

At the beginning of the second century BCE, Palestinian Jewry passed 
through a state of crisis. Alexander the Great had conquered the Holy 
Land in 332 BCE and, after the early uncertainties which followed his 
death, it became part of the empire of the Greeks of Egypt, known as 
the Ptolemies. During the third century, the Ptolemies avoided, as 
much as possible, interfering with the internal life of the Jewish nation 
and, while taxes were required to be paid, it remained urKlerthe rule of 
the High Priest and his council. Important ctianges in the patterns of 
population nevertheless took place during this time. Hellenistic cities 
were built along the Mediterranean coast, such as Gaza, Ascalon 
(Ashkelon), Joppa (Jaffa), Dor and Acco, re-named Ptolemais. Inland 
also, to the south of the Lake of Tiberias, the ancient town of Beth 
Shean was reborn as the Greek city of Scythopolis; Samaria, the 
capital city of the Samaritans, was Hellenized as Sebaste; and in 
Transjordan, Rabbath-Ammon (Amman) was re-founded as 
Philadelphia. In other words, Greeks, Macedonians and Hellenized 
Phoenicians took up permanent residence on Palestinian soil and the 
further spread of Greek civilization and culture was merely a matter of 

With the cxjtxiuest of the Holy Land by the Seleucids, or Syrian 
Greei<s, in 200 BCE, the first signs appeared of Jews succumbing to a 
foreign cultural influence. In the apocryphal Book of Ecclesiasticus, 
dated to the beginning of the second century BCE, its author, Jesus 
ben Sira, a sage from Jerusalem, rages against those 'ungodly men' 
who have 'forsaken the Law of the Most High God' (xli, 8). But the real 
trouble started wtien Antiochus IV Epiphanes (175-164 BCE) officially 
promoted a Hellenizing programme in Judaea that was embraced with 
eagerness by the Jewish elite. The leader of the modemist faction was 
the brother of the High Priest Onias III. Known as Jesus among his 
compatriots, he adopted the Greek name of Jason, and set about 
transforming Jerusalem into a Hellenistic city by building a gymnasium 
there and persuading the Jewish youth to participate in athletic games. 
As 2 Maccabees describes the situation: 

So Hellenism reached a high point with the introduction of foreign 
customs through the boundless wickedness of the Impious Jason, no 
true High Priests a result, the priests no longer had any enthusiasm for 
their duties at the altar, but despised the temple and neglected the 
sacrifices; and In defiance of the law they eagerty contributed to the 
e)f>enses of the wrestling-school whenever the opening gong called 
them. They placed no value on their hereditary dignities, but cared abow 
e\«rylhing for Hellenic tionours. 

(2 Mac. iv, 13-15) 

Jason was succeeded by two other High Priests with the same Greek 
sympathies, Menelaus and Alcimus. In 169 BCE Antiochus IV visited 
Jerusalem and looted the Temple. But when in 167 he actually 
prohibited the practice of Judaism under pain of death and 
rededicated the Jerusalem Sanctuary to Olympian Zeus, the 
'abomination of desolation', the opponents of the Hellenizers finally 
rose up in violent resistance. An armed revolt was instigated by the 
priest IVIattathias and his sons the IVIaccabee brothers, supported by 
all the traditionalist Jews, and in particular by the company of the 
Pious, the Asidaeans or Hasidim, 'stalwarts of Israel, every one of 
them a volunteer in the cause of the Law' (1 Mac. ii, 42-3). Led by 
Judas Maccabaeus and, after his death on the battlefield, by his 

brothers Jonathan and Simon, the fierce defenders of Judaism were 
abie not only to restore Je\/vish worship in Jerusalem, but against aii 
expectations even managed to eject the ruling Seleuclds and to 
liberate Judaea. 

The Maccabaean triumph was, however, not simply a 
straightfon/vard victory of godliness and justice over idolatry and 
tyranny; It was accompanied by serious social and religious 
upheavals. There was firstly a change in the pontifical succession. With 
the murder in 171 BCE of Onlas III and the deposition of the usurper, 
his brother Jason, the Zadoklte family from which the Incumbents of 
the High Priest's office traditionally came, lost the monopoly which it 
had held for centuries. Furthermore, when Onias IV, the son of Onias ill, 
was prevented from taking over the High Priesthood from Meneiaus, 
he emigrated to Egypt and In direct breach of biblical law, which 
authorizes only a single sanctuary in Jerusalem, erected a Jewish 
temple in Leontopoiis with the blessing of King Ptolemy Phiiometor 
(182-146 BCE). His inauguration of Israelite worship outside Zion, with 
the connivance of some priests and Levites, must have scandalized 
every Palestinian conservative, especially other priests wtra belonged, 
or were allied, to the Zadokite dynasty. 

There was trouble also within the ranks of the iVIaccabees 
themselves. The Hasidim - or part of their group - defected when 
Aicimus, whom they trusted, was appointed High Priest in 162 BCE. 
This move on their part turned out to be naive ; Aicimus' Syrian allies 
massacred sixty of them in one day (1 iVIac. vii, 2-20). 

Lastly a major political change came about when Jonathan 
iVIaccabaeus, himself a priest but not a Zadokite, accepted in 153-152 
BCE pontifical office from Alexander Baias, a usurper of the Seieucid 
throne. Alexander was anxious for Jewish support and was not 
mistaken in thinking that an offer of the High Priesthood would be 
irresistible. For the conservatives this was an illegal seizure of power 
But they were even more scandalized by the appointment In 140 BCE, 
following Jonathan's execution in 143- 142 by the Syrian general 
Tryphon, of Simon Maccabee as High Priest and hereditary leader of 
the people by means of a decree passed by a Jewish national 

From then on, until Pompeys transformation of tlie independent 
Jewish state into a Roman province in 63 BCE, Judaea was ruled by a 
new dynasty of High Priests, later Priest-Kings, known as the 
Hasmonaeans after tfie grandfather of the Maccabees, Hasmon, or 
Asamonaeus according to Josephus fWar 1, 36). During the 
intervening years, all Simon's successors, but especially John 
Hyrcanus I (1 34-1 04 BCE) and Alexander Jannaeus (1 03-76 BCE), for 
whom their political role took precedence over their office of High 
Priest, occupied one by one the Hellenistic cities of Palestine and 
conquered the neighbouring territories of kJumaea in the south, 
Samaria in the centre and Ituraea in the north. 

Throughout this period of territorial expansion, the Hasmonaean 
rulers enjoyed the support of ttie Sadducees, one of ttie three religious 
parties first mentioned under Jonathan Maccabaeus (cf. Josephus, 
Antiquities X\\\, 171) and regular allies of the government. They were 
opposed by the Pharisees, an essentially lay group formed from one of 
the branches of the Hasidim of the IVIaccabaean age. Already in the 
days of John Hyrcanus I there was Pharisaic objection to his 
usurpation of the High Priesthood, though they were willing to 
recognize him as national leader (Antiquities XIII, z 88-98), but on one 
other occasion, at least, their opposition was overcome by force. 
Accused of plotting against Alexander Jannaeus in 88 BCE in 
collusion with the Syrian Seleucid king Demetrius III Eucaerus, 800 
Pharisees were condemned by Jannaeus to die on the cross 
(Antiquities xm, 380-83; War 1 , 96-8). 

After Pompeys seizure of Jerusalem, the Hasmonaean High 
Priesthood continued for another three decades, but the political 
power formerly belonging to them passed to the Judalzed Idumaean, 
Herod the Great, when he was promoted to the throne of Jerusalem by 
Rome in 37 BCE. It is to the last year or two of his reign - he died in 4 
BCE - that the Gospels of Matthew and Luke date the birth of Jesus of 
Nazareth (Matth.ii,1;Lk.i, 5). 

After the ephemeral rule of the successor to Herod the Great, Herod 
Archelaus (4 BCE-6 CE), who was deposed by Augustus for his 
misgovernment of Jews and Samaritans alike, Galilee continued in 
semi-autonomy under the Herodian princes Antipas (4 BCE-39 CE) 

and Agrippa (39-41 CE), but Judaea was placed under the direct 
administration of Roman authority. In 6 CE, Coponius, the first Roman 
prefect of Judaea, amved to tal<e up his duties there. This prefectorial 
regime, wtiose most notorious representative was Pontius Pilate (26- 
36 CE), lasted for thirty-five years until 41 , when the emperor Claudius 
appointed Agrippa I as king. He died, however, three years later, and 
in 44 CE the govemment of the province once more reverted to 
Roman officials, this time with the title of procurator. Their corrupt and 
unwise harKlling of Jewish affairs was one of the chief causes of the 
war of 66 which led to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE, and to 
the subsequent decline of the Sadducees, the extinction of the Zealots 
in Masada in 74, the disappearance of the Essenes, arKi the survival 
and uncontested domination of the Pharisees and their rabbinic 

It is into this general course of events that the history of Qumran has 
to be inserted. Document by document the Scrolls will be scrutinized 
and the literary information combined, both with the findings of Qumran 
archaeology and with the incidental reports provided by Josephus. In 
the end it is hoped that the history of the Essene sect will begin to fall 
reliably into place. 


(a) Concealed References in the Scrolls 

The search for clues to the origins and story of the movement begins 
with the Damascus Document because it is a writing particularly rich in 
such hints. Here, the birth of the Community is said to have occurred in 
the 'age of wrath', 390 years after the destruction of Jerusalem by 
Nebuchadnezzar, l<ing of Babylon. At that time, a 'root' sprung 'from 
Israel and Aaron', i.e. a group of pious Jews, laymen and priests, 
came into being in a situation of general ungodliness. These people 
'groped for the way for twenty years, and then God sent them a 

'Teacher of Righteousness' to guide them 'in the way of His heart' (1 , 
5-11). The Teacher did not meet with unanimous approval within the 
congregation, and a faction described as 'seel<ers of smooth things', 
'removers of the bounds' and 'builders of the wall', all metaphors 
seeming to point to religious laxity and infidelity turned against him 
and his followers. The leader of the breakaway party, though accorded 
a number of unflattering sobriquets, such as 'Scoffer', 'Liar' or 'Spouter 
of Lies', seems to be one and the same person. His associates erred 
In matters of ritual cleanness, justice, chastity, the dates of festivals 
and Temple worship; they were lovers of money and enemies of 
peace. In the ensuing fratricidal struggle, the Teacher and those who 
remained faithful to him went Into exile In the 'land of Damascus' where 
they entered into a 'new Covenant'. There, the Teacher of 
Righteousness was 'gathered in', meaning that he died. In the 
meantime, the wicked dominated over Jerusalem and the Temple, 
though not without experiencing God's vengeance at the hands of the 
'Chief of the Kings of Greece'. 

A similar picture emerges from the Habakkuk Commentary with its 
explicit mention of desertion by disciples of the Teacher of 
Righteousness to the Liar, and also by members unfaithful to the 'new 
Covenant'. The allusions to the protagonists of the conflict are sharper 
in this work than in the Damascus Document. We learn that the villain, 
known in this Scroii as the 'Wicked Priest' as well as the 'Liar' and 
'Spouter of Lies', was 'caiied by the name of truth' before he became 
Israel's ruler and was corrupted by wealth and power (VIII, 8-11)- the 
implication being that for a time he had met with the sect's approval. 
Subsequently however, he defiled Jerusalem and the Temple. He also 
sinned against the Teacher of Righteousness and his disciples, 
chastising him while the 'House of Absalom' looked silently on (v, 9- 
12), and confronting him in his place of exile on the sect's Day of 
Atonement (xi, 6-8). He 'vilified and outraged the elect of God', 'plotted 
to destroy the Poor', i.e. the Community and stole their riches. As a 
punishment, God delivered him 'into the hand of his enemies', who 
'took vengeance on his body of flesh' (IX, 2). At the last judgement, 
predicts the Commentary, the Wicked Priest will empty 'the cup of 
wrath of God'. His successors, ttie 'last Priests of Jeaisalem', are also 

charged with amassing 'money atxl wealth by plundering the peoples', 
I.e. foreigners. But, so the commentator asserts, all their riches and 
booty will be snatched from them by the KIttIm, the conquerors of the 
world commissioned by God to pay them their just deserts. 

Because of lacunae, one cannot be quite sure from the Habakkuk 
Commentary that the Teacher was a priest. The Commentary on 
Psalms (Ps. xxxvll, 4Q171, 173), by contrast, makes this plain. 
Interpreting verses 23-4, it reads: 'this concerns the Priest, the 
Teacher of [Righteousness]'. It further supplies a significant detail by 
assigning to 'the violent of the nations', that Is to say to the Gentiles as 
opposed to the Jews, the execution of judgement on the Wicked 
Priest. Another point of Interest Is that the enemies of the sect are 
alluded to as 'the wicked of Ephralm and Manasseh', I.e. as of two 
distinct factions. They appear also In the Commentary on Nahum. 

In the Messianic Anthology or Testlmonia (4Q175), references 
appear In the final section, borrowed from a Joshua Apocryphon or 
Psalms of Joshua (4Q379 fr. 22 II), to two 'instruments of violence' 
who ruled Jerusalem. They are cursed for making the city a 'stronghold 
of ungodliness' and for committing 'an abomination' In the land. They 
are also said to have shed blood 'like water on the ramparts of the 
daughter of ZIon'. The relationship of the two tyrants to one another 
cannot be established with certainty because of the fragmentary nature 
of the manuscript. They could be father and son. On the other hand, the 
expression 'Instruments of violence' depends on Genesis xllx, 5 where 
It describes the brother murderers, Simeon arxJ Levi, the destroyers of 

The Nahum Commentary moves on to an age following that of the 
Teacher of Righteousness and the Wicked Priest, as neither of them Is 
mentioned. The principal character here Is the 'furious young iion', a 
Jewish ruler of Jerusalem. He Is said to have taken revenge on the 
'seekers of smooth things', whom he reproached for having Invited 
'Demetrius' the king of Greece to Jerusalem. The attempt failed; no 
foreigner entered the city 'from the time of Antlochus until the coming 
of the rulers of the KIttIm'. The enemies of the 'furious young Hon' were 
'hanged alive on the tree', a familiar Hebrew circumlocution for 
crucifixion. As in ttie Commentary on Psalm xxxvll, the sobriquets 

'Ephraim' and 'Manasseh' are attached to the Community's 
opponents. 'Ephraim' is said to 'walk in lies and falsehood', but 
because of gaps in the manuscript, the description of 'IVIanasseh' is 
less clear. It seems nevertheless that this party included great men', 
'mighty men' and 'men of dignity'. 

The Nahum Commerrtary was the first of the Qumran Scrolls to 
disclose historical names: those of two Seleucid kings, Antiochus and 
Demetrius. But tfieir Identity has still to be determined because nine 
monarchs in all bore the first name, and three the second. Additional 
names figure in various Cave 4 manuscripts of a liturgical calendar 
(4Q331-3): 'Sheiamzion', the Hebrew name of Queen Salome- 
Alexandra, widow of Alexander Jannaeus, who reigned from 76 to 67 
BOB; 'Hyrcanus' and 'John', probably John Hyrcanus ii, son of 
Alexandra and High Priest from 76 to 67 and again from 63 to 40; and 
'Emiiius', no doubt iVI. Aemiiius Scaurus, the first Roman governor of 
Syria from 65 to 62 BCE, who is charged with killing people. Note also 
that the Baiakros of 4Q243 may be the Seleucid usurper Alexander 

A remarkable piece of prayer-poetry (4Q448) refers to 'King 
Jonathan' in connection with Jerusalem and diaspora Jewry. A good 
case has been made out by E. and H. Eshei (IE J 42, 1992, 199-229) 
for identifying him with Alexander Jannaeus, but in my opinion an even 
stronger argument points towards Jonathan iVIaccabaeus as 'King 
Jonathan' (cf JJS44, 1993, 294-300). Also, one of the proposed 
readings of line 9 of the List of False Prophets (4Q339), '[John son of 
Simjon', would provide an allusion to John Hyrcanus I. Finally the 
person called Potlaos - Ptoilas - Peithoiaos (4Q468e) may refer to one 
of two historical figures who lived either in the middle or the end of the 
first century BCE. 

in the Commentaries on Habakkuk and Nahum, the Kittim are 
represented as instruments appointed by God to punish the ungodly 
priests of Jerusalem. The War Rule, however, testifies to a changed 
attitude towards them on the part of the sect by making the Kittim 
appear as the chief allies of Belial or Satan and the final foe to be 
subjugated by the tiosts of the sons of Light. The Rule of War (4Q285), 
although very fragmentary, appears to point in the same direction. 

Several Qumran Hymns reflect the career arxl sentimerrts of a 
teacher, possibly of the Teacher of Righteousness himself According 
to them, he was opposed by 'irrterpreters of error', 'traitors', 
'deceivers', and 'tliose who seek smooth things', all of whom were 
formerly his 'friends' and 'members of [his] Covenant', bearers of the 
'yoke of [his] testimony". In one of them, the reference to a 'devilish 
scheme' is reminiscent of the allusion in the Habakkuk Commentary to 
the visit of the Wicked Priest to the Community's place of exile in order 
to cause them 'to stumble': 

Teachers of lies [ha\« smoothed] Thy people [with words], 
and [false prophets] have led them astray... 
Dieyhave banished me from myland like a bird from its nest.. 
And they, teachers of lies and seers of falsehood, 
have schemed against me a devilish scheme, 
to e)change the Lawengraysd on my heart by Thee 
for the smooth things (which they speak) to Thy people. 
yVid they withhold from the thirsty the drink of knowledge, 
and assuage their thirst with vinegar, 
that they may gaze on thel r strayi ng, 
on theirfbllyconceming their feast-dais, 
on their fall into the snares. 

(IQH XII [formerly IV], 7-12) 

Another Hymn appears to hirrt at the Teacher's withdrawal from society 
and to announce with confidence his eventual glorious justification: 

For Thou, OGod, hast sheltered me 

from the children of men, 

and hast hidden Thy Law [within me] 

against the time when Thou shouldst reveal 


(IQH XIII [formerly V], 11-12) 

Some scholars consider these poems autobiographical, i.e. written by 
the Teacher, but this is mere speculation. 

It would be unrealistic, taking into account the vagueness of all these 
statements, the cryptic nature of the symbolism and the entire lack of 
any systematic exposition of the secf s history, to expect every detail to 

be identified. We can, however, attempt to define the chronological 
framework of the historical references and thus be in a position to 
place at least some of the key events and principal personalities within 
the context of Jewish history as we know it. 

(b) The Chronological Framework 

The chronological setting of Qumran history may be reconstructed from 
archaeological and literary evidence. The excavations of 1951-6 date 
the beginning, the terminus a quo, of the sectarian establishment to 
150-140 BCE and its end, the terminus ad quem, to the middle of the 
first war against Rome, 68 CE.™ The literary allusions, particularly the 
identifiable historical names, confirm this general finding. It goes 
without saying, however, that the initial phases of the Community's 
existence must have preceded by some years or decades the actual 
establishment of the sect at Qumran. The first task therefore is to 
examine the Scrolls for indications of its origins. The Nahum 
Commentary implies that a king by the name of Antiochus was alive at 
the beginning of the period with which the documents are concerned. 
This Antiochus, although one among several so called, can only have 
been Antiochus IV Epiphanes, notorious for his looting of Jerusalem 
and the profanation of the Temple in 169-168 BCE. 

More significant as a chronological pointer is the dating, in the 
Damascus Document, of the sect's beginnings to the 'age of wrath', 
390 years after the conquest of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 
BCE. This should bring us to 196 BCE but, as is well known, Jewish 
historians are not very reliable in their time-reckoning for the post-exilic 
era. They do not seem to have had a clear idea of the length of the 
Persian domination, and they were in addition not free of the 
theological influence of the Book of Daniel, where a period of seventy 
weeks of years, i.e. 490 years, is given as separating the epoch of 
Nebuchadnezzar from that of the Messiah. As it happens, if to this 
figure of 390 years is added, firstly twenty (during which the ancestors 
of the Community 'groped' for their way until the entry on the scene of 

the Teacher of Righteousness), then another forty (the time span 
between ttie death of the Teacher and the dawn of the messianic 
epoch), the total stretch of years anived at is 450. And if to this total is 
added the duration of the Teacher's ministry of, say forty years - a 
customary round figure — ^the final result is the classic seventy times 
seven years. 

Yet even if the literal figure of 390 is rejected, there are still 
compelling reasons for placing the 'age of wrath' In the opening 
decades of the second pre-Christian century. Only the Hellenistic crisis 
which occurred at that time, and which Is recalled in various Jewish 
literary sources from the last two centuries BCE, provides a fitting 
context for the historical allusions made in the sectarian writings (cf. 
Daniel ix-xi; Enoch xc, 6-7; Jubilees XXIII, 14-19; Testament of Levi 
XVII; Assumption of Moses IV-V). Also, it is the Hasidim of the pre- 
Maccabaean and early Maccabaean era who best correspond to the 
earlier but unorganized group as it is described there (cf pp. 51-2). 

As for the terminus ad quern of Qumran history, as this is linked to 
the appearance of the Kittim, we have to determine who these people 
were. In its primitive sense, the word 'Kittim' described the inhabitants 
of Kition, a Phoenician colony in Cyprus. Later the name tended to be 
applied indiscriminately to those living in 'all islands and most 
maritime countries' (Josephus, /\nf/qw/f/es 1, 128). But from the 
second century BCE, Jewish writers also used 'Kittim' more precisely 
to denote the greatest worid power of the day In Maccabees (i, 1; viii, 
5) they are Greeks; Alexander the Great and Perseus are called kings 
of the 'Kittim'. In Daniel xi, 30 on the other hand, the 'Kittim' are 
Romans; it was the ambassador of the Roman senate, Poppilius 
Laenas, brought to Alexandria by 'ships of Kittim', i.e. the Roman fleet, 
who instructed the 'king of the North', the Seleucid monarch Antiochus 
Epiphanes, to withdraw at once from Egypt. The term 'Romans' is 
substituted for 'Kittim' already in the old Greek or Septuagint version of 
Daniel xi, 30. None of these texts is critical of the 'Kittim'. They are 
seen as the ruling force of the time, but not as hostile to Israel. In fact, 
in Daniel they humiliate the enemy of the Jews. It is not till a later stage, 
especially after 70 CE, that they come to symbolize oppression and 

In the Habakkuk Commentary, the portrait of the Kittim is neutral, as 
In Maccabees and Daniel. (In the Damascus Document they play no 
part; the alien adversary there is the 'Chief of the Kings of Greece'.) 
Feared and admired by all, they are seen to be on the point of 
defeating the 'last Priests of Jerusalem' and confiscating their wealth, 
as they have done to many others before. Such a representation of a 
victorious and advancing might would hardly apply to the Greek 
Seleuclds of Syria, who by the second half of the second century BCE 
were in grave decline. But it does correspond to the Romans, whose 
thrust to the east In the first century BCE resulted in their triumphs over 
Pontus, Armenia and Seleucid Syria, and finally, with ttie arrival of 
Pompey in Jemsalem in 63 BCE, in ttie transformation of the 
Hasmonaean state Into Judaea, a province of the Roman republic. 

Since the Identlficafion of the 'KIttIm' as Romans Is nowadays 
generally accepted, It will suffice to cite a single, but very striking, 
feature In the Habakkuk Commentary to support It. Interpreting Hab. 1 , 
14-16 as referring to the 'KIttIm', the commentator writes: 'This means 
that they sacrifice to their standards and worship their weapons of war' 
(IQpHab. VI, 3-5). Now this custom of worshipping the signa was a 
characteristic of the reiigion of the Roman armies both In republican 
and in imperial times, as Josephus testifies in his report of the capture 
of the Temple of Jerusalem by the legionaries of Titus In 70. 

The Romans, now that the rebels had fled to the city and the Sanctuary 
itself and all around it were in flames, earned their standards into the 
Temple court, and setting them up opposite the eastem gate, there 
sacrificed to them. 

(War VI, 316) 

It Is also worth nofing that the 'KIttIm' of the War Scroll, the final 
opponents of the eschatologlcal Israel, are subject to a king or 
emperor (/T!e/e/(/)). Previously, In the Commentaries of Habakkuk and 
Nahum, they are said to have been governed by rulers (moshelim). In 
sum, therefore, the fime-llmlts of the sect's history appear to be at one 
extreme the beginning of the second century BCE, and at the other 
some moment during the Roman Imperial epoch. I.e. after 27 BCE. 

And this latter date is determined by Qumran archaeology as 
coinciding with the first Jewish war, and even more precisely with the 
arrival of the annies of Vespasian and "Titus in the neighbourhood of 
the Dead Sea in June 68 CE. 

(c) Decipherment of Particular Allusions 

The 'age of wrath' having been identified as that of the Hellenistic 
crisis of the beginning of the second century BCE, the 'root' as the 
Hasidim of the pre-Maccabaean age, and the 'Kittim' as the Romans, 
the next major problem is to discover who was, or were, the principal 
Jewish enemy or enemies of the sect at the time of the ministry of the 
Teacher of Righteousness variously known as the 'Scoffer', the 'Liar' , 
the 'Spouter of Lies' and the 'Wicked Priest' (IQpHab, 4QPs^, CD). 

It is not unreasonable to conclude that all these insults are directed 
at the same individual. It would appear from the Damascus Document 
that the 'Scoffer' and the 'Liar' (cf. also 4QpPs^ POCXVIO) were one 
and the same ('when the Scoffer arose who shed over Israel the 
waters of lies', CD 1 , 14). And we read of the 'Wicked Priest' that he 
was called 'by the name of truth' (1 QpHab VIII, 8-9) at the outset of his 
career, the inference being that later he changed into a 'Liar'. 

Another basic premise must be that the person intended by the 
fragments of information contained in the Scrolls became the head, the 
national leader, of the Jewish people. For although biblical names are 
often used symbolically, Including that of 'Israel', the actions attributed 
to the 'Wicked Priest' make little sense if the person In question did 
not exercise both pontifical and secular power. He 'ruled over Israel'. 
He 'robbed... the riches of the men of violence wfK) rebelled against 
God', probably Jewish apostates, as well as 'the wealth of the 
peoples', i.e. the Gentiles. He built 'his city of vanity with blood', 
committed 'abominable deeds in Jerusalem and defiled the Temple of 
God' (IQpHab VIII). Taken separately, these observations might be 
understood allegorically, but considered together, they constitute a 
strong argument for recognizing the 'Wicked Priest' as a ruling High 
Priest in Jerusalem. 

The 'Wicked Priest', then, was a Pontiff who enjoyed good repute 
before he assumed office. He was victorious over his adversaries at 
home and abroad. He rebuilt Jerusalem (cf. IQpHab VIII, 8-11; 

4Q448). And he was eventually captured and put to death by a foreign 

The chronological guidelines established in the preceding section 
locate the period in which this individual flourished between the reign 
of Antiochus Epiphanes (175-164 BCE) and the probable date of the 
foundation at Qumran (150-140 BCE). During that time, five men held 
the office of High Priest. Three of ttiem were pro-Greek: Jason, 
Menelaus and Alcimus. The remaining two were the Maccabee 
brothers, Jonathan and Simon. All the Hellenizers can be eliminated as 
candidates for the role of 'Wicl<ed Priest' since none can be said to 
have enjoyed anything like good repute at the beginning of their 
ministry. Jason and Alcimus fail also because neither was killed by an 
enemy, as implied in IQpHab VIII-IX. Jason died in exile (2 IVIac. v, 7- 
9) and Alcimus in office (1 IVIac. ix, 54-6). The Maccabee brothers, by 
contrast, meet all the conditions. The careers of both men fall easily 
into two stages, marked, in the case of Jonathan, by his acceptance of 
the High Priesthood from Alexander Balas, and In the case of Simon 
by his willingness to become a hereditary High Priest. Both were also 
'instruments of violence' and both died by violence. Jonathan is 
nevertheless to be chosen rather than Simon because he alone 
suffered the vengeance of the 'Chief of the Kings of Greece' and died 
at the hands of the 'violent of the nations', whereas Simon was 
murdered by his son-in-law (i IVIac. xvi, 14-16). A gallant defender of 
Jewish religion and independence, Jonathan succeeded the heroic 
Judas In 161 BCE when the latter fell In battle. But he qualified for the 
epithet 'Wicked Priest' when he accepted in 153-152 BCE from 
Alexander Balas, a heathen usurper of the Seleucid throne who had no 
right to grant them, the pontifical vestments which Jonathan was not 
entitled to wear. Captured later by a former general of Alexander 
Balas, Tryphon, he was killed by him at Bascama in Transjordan (1 
IVIac. xiii, 23). 

Concerning the identity of the 'last Priests of Jerusalem', the 
passion for conquest, wealth and plunder for which they are 
reproached points to the Hasmonaean priestly rulers, from Simon's 
son, John Hyrcanus I (134-104 BCE), to Judas Aristobulus II (67-63 
BCE). There can in particular be little doubt that the 'furious young lion'. 

designated also as 'the last Priest' in a badly damaged Commentary 
on Hosea (4Q167 11 2-3), was one of them, namely Alexander 
Jannaeus. The application to him of the words of Nahum, 'who chokes 
prey for its lionesses', and the report that the 'young lion' executed the 
'seekers of smooth things' by 'hanging men alive', accord perfectly 
with the known story that Jannaeus crucified 800 Pharisees whilst 
feasting with his concubines (cf above, p. 53). 

From this it follows that 'Ephraim', equated in the Commentary on 
Nahum with the 'seekers of smooth things', symbolizes the Pharisees, 
and that if so, 'Manasseh' and his dignitaries must refer to the 
Sadducees. In other words, the political and doctrinal opponents of the 
Essene community, though itself with proto-Sadducaean links on 
account of its priestly leadership as insinuated by MMT, were the 
Sadducees and the Pharisees. 

This division of Jewish society into three opposing groups 
corresponds to the conformation described by Josephus as existing 
from the time of Jonathan Maccabaeus (Antiquities XIII, 171), but the 
new insight provided by the Scrolls suggests that the united resistance 
to Hellenism first fell apart when the Maccabees, and more precisely 
Jonathan, refused to acknowledge the spiritual leadership of the 
Teacher of Righteousness, the priestly head of the Hasldlm. From then 
on, the sect saw its defectors as 'Ephraim' and 'Manasseh', these 
being the names of the sons of Joseph, associated in biblical history 
with the apostate Northern kingdom, and referred to itself as the 
'House of Judah', the faithful South. 

Unfortunately, on the most vital topic of all, the question of the identity 
of the Teacher of Righteousness, we can be nothing like as clear. If the 
'Wicked Priest' was Jonathan Maccabaeus, the Teacher would, of 
course, have been one of his contemporaries. Yet all we know of him 
is that he was a priest (IQpHab 11,8; 4QpPs [XXXVII ii, 15=4Q171]), 
no doubt of Zadokite affiliation, though obviously opposed to Onias IV 
since he did not follow him to Egypt and to his unlawful Temple in He founded or re-founded the Community He 
transmitted to them his own distinctive Interpretation of the Prophets 
and, if we can rely at least indirectly on the Hymns, of the laws relating 
to the celebration of festivals. The 'Liar' and his sympathizers in the 

congregation of the Hasidim disagreed witli Hm, and after a violent 
confrontation between the two factions In which the 'Liar' gained the 
upper hand, the Teacher and his remaining followers fled to a place of 
refuge called 'the land of Damascus': it has been suggested that this is 
a cryptic designation of Babylonia, the original birthplace of the group, 
or else that 'Damascus' Is a symbolical name for Qumran. The 'House 
of Absalom' gave the Teacher of Righteousness no help against the 
'Liar', writes the Habakkuk commentator (IQpHab v, 9-12), the 
implication being that this was support on which he might have relied. If 
'Absalom' Is also a symbol, it doubtless recalls the rebellion of 
Absalom against his father David, and thus points to the perfidy of a 
close relation or intimate friend of the Teacher. On the other hand, 
since the 'House of Absalom' is accused not of an actual attack but 
simply of remaining silent during the Teacher's 'chastisement', this 
allegorical solution may not be convincing. The allusion may then be a 
straightfon/vard one. A certain Absalom was an ambassador of Judas 
Maccabaeus (2 Mac. xi, 17), and his son IVIattathias was one of 
Jonathan's gallant officers (1 Mac. xi, 70). Another of his sons, 
Jonathan, commanded Simon's army which captured Joppa (1 Mac. 
xiii, 11). 

Meanwhile, even in his 'place of exile' the Teacher continued to be 
harassed and persecuted by the Wicked Priest. In this connection, the 
most important and painful episode appears to have been the Priest's 
pursuit of the Teacher to his settlement with the purpose of pouring on 
him 'his venomous fury". Appearing before the sectaries on 'their 
Sabbath of repose', at the 'time appointed for rest, for the Day of 
Atonement', his intention was to cause them 'to stumble on the Day of 
Fasting'. It is impossible to say, from the evidence so far available, 
precisely what happened on this portentous occasion, or whether it 
was then or later that the Wicked Priest 'laid hands' on the Teacher 
'that he might put him to death'. The wording is equivocal. For 
example, the verb in IQpHab xi, 5, 7, translated 'to confuse', can also 
mean 'to swallow up', and some scholars have chosen to understand 
that the Teacher was killed by the Wicked Priest at the time of the visit. 
On the other hand, we find recounted in the imperfect tense (which can 
be rendered into English as either the future or the present tense): 'The 

wicked of Ephraim and Manasseh ... seek/will seek to lay hands on the 
Priest and the men of his Counoii... But God redeems/will redeem 
them from out of their hand' (4QpPs3 pCXXVII, II, l7-l9=4Qi7G). In other 
words, we neither know who the founder of the Essenes was, nor how, 
nor where, nor when he died. Only writers upholding the most uniikeiy 
Christian identification of the Community claim to be better informed, 
but disagree among themselves. J. L. Teicher thought the Teacher 
was Jesus. For Barbara Thiering Jesus was the Wicked Priest, John 
the Baptist the Teacher; R. H. Eisenman rejects both and prefers 
James the Just, 'the brother of the Lord', as the Teacher of 
Righteousness. Only the sensation-seeking media tiave been taken in 
by their theories. 

it has been suggested that this inability to identify the Teacher of 
Righteousness in the context of the IVIaccabaean period undermines 
the credibility of the reconstruction as a whole. Is it conceivable, it is 
asked, that a figure of the stature of the Teacher should have left no 
trace in the literature relating to that time? The answer to this objection 
is that such writings are to aii intents and purposes restricted to the 
Books of the IVIaccabees, sources politically biased in favour of their 
heroes and virtually oblivious of the very existence of opposition 
movements. Josephus himself relies largely on 1 Maccabees and 
cannot therefore be regarded as an independent witness. But even 
were this not so, and he had additional material at his disposition, his 
silence vis-a-vis the Teacher of Righteousness would still not call for 
particular comment since he also makes no mention of the founder of 
the Pharisees. And incidentally, not a few historians hold that he has 
nothing to say either of Jesus of Nazareth. The so-called Testimonium 
Fiavianum (Antiquities XVIII, 63-4), they maintain, is a Christian 
interpolation into the genuine text o1 Antiquities (though others, myself 
included, think that part of the text is authentic). Be this as it may not a 
word is breathed by him about Hiiiei, the greatest of the Pharisee 
masters, or about Yohanan ben Zakkai, who reorganized Judaism 
after the destruction of the Temple, although both of these men lived in 
Josephus' own century and Yohanan was definitely his contemporary. 

Admittedly ttie various fragments of information gleaned from the 
Dead Sea Scrolls result in an unavoidably patchy story, but it is 

fundamentally sound, and the continuing anonymity of the Teacher 
does nothing to impair it. For the present synthesis to be complete it 
remains now to turn to Josephus for his occasional historical 
references to individual Essenes and to Essenism. 

To begin with it should be pointed out that four members of the 
Community are actually mentioned by the Jewish historian, three of 
them associated with prophecy one of the distinctive interests of the 
Teacher of Righteousness himself. The first, called Judas, is 
encountered in Jerusalem surrounded by a group of pupils taking 
instruction in 'foretelling the future', which probably means how to 
identify prophetic pointers to future events. Josephus writes of him that 
he had 'never been known to speak falsely in his prophecies', and that 
he predicted the death of Antigonus, the brother of Aristobulus I (104- 
103 BCE) (Antiquities XIII, 311-13). A second Essene prophet, 
Menahem, apparently foretold that Herod would rule over the Jews (xv, 
373-8). Herod showed his gratitude to him by dispensing the Essenes, 
who were opposed to all oaths except their own oath of the Covenant, 
from taking the vow of loyalty imposed on all his Jewish subjects. A 
third Essene named Simon interpreted a dream of Archelaus, 
ethnarch of Judaea (4 BCE-6 CE), in 4 BCE to mean that his rule 
would last for ten years (XVII, 345-8). John the Essene, the last sectary 
to be referred to by Josephus, was not a prophet, but the commander 
or strategos of the district of Thamna in north-western Judaea, and of 
the cities of Lydda (Lod), Joppa (Jaffa) and Emmaus at the beginning 
of the first revolution (War 11, 567). A man of 'first-rate prowess and 
ability', he fell in battle at Ascalon (III, II, I9).Z? 

Finally Josephus depicts in vivid language the bravery of the 
Essenes subjected to torture by the Romans. 

The war with the Romans tried their souls through and through by every 
\srietyof test. Racked and twisted, burned and broken, and made to pass 
through every instrument of torture in order to induce them to blaspheme 
their lawgi\«r or to eat some forbidden thing, they refused to yield to either 
demand, nor e\«r once did they cringe to their persecutors or shed a tear 
Smiling in their agonies and mildly deriding their tormentors, they 
cheerfully resigned their souls, confident that they would recei\« them 
back again. 

(War 11, 152-3) 

Since it would appear from tliis passage tliat tlie Romans were 
persecuting not individuals, but a group, it is tempting, bearing in mind 
the archaeologists' claim that the Qumran settlement was destroyed by 
the Romans, to associate it with the story of Essenes captured by the 
Dead Sea. If such a surmise is correct, the sect's disappearance from 
history may well have been brought about in the lethal blow suffered by 
its central establishment during the fateful summer of 68 CE. The fact 
that no attempt was made to recover nearly 800 manuscripts from the 
caves confirms, it would seem, such a reconstruction of the end of 
Qumran and, with the annihilation of its central establishment, of the 
whole Essene movement. 

IV The Religious Ideas of the Community 

The first essays in tlie 1950s on tlie religious outlool< of tlie Qumran 
sect all suffered from a serious defect in that scholars in those days 
tended to envisage the Scrolls as self-contained and entitled to 
independent treatment. Today, with the hindsight of five decades of 
research and with the entire corpus to hand, it is easier to conceive of 
the theology of the Community as part of the general doctrinal evolution 
of ancient Judaism. 

Nevertheless, it is no simple task to follow that development itself, 
the reason being that the systematic exposition of beliefs and customs 
is not a traditional Jewish discipline. In a sense, the Instruction on the 
Two Spirits, incorporated in the Community Rule, alluded to earlier (p. 
28), is an exception, forming the one and only doctrinal treatise among 
ancient Hebrew writings. The theology of Judaism, biblical, inter- 
Testamental, medieval or modern, when written by contemporary 
Jewish authors, is often modelled consciously or unconsciously on 
Christian dogmatic structures: God, creation, human destiny, 
messianic redemption, judgement, resurrection, heaven and hell. Such 
structures may and sometimes do distort the religious concepts of 
Judaism. For example, the interest of the Church in the messianic role 
of Jesus is apt to assign a greater importance to Messianism in 
Jewish religion than the historical evidence justifies, and Paul's 
hostility to the 'legalism' of Israel obscures the Jewish recognition of 
the humble realities of everyday life prescribed by the Law as no mere 
'works' but as a path to holiness walked in obedience to God's 


Since the key to any understanding of Judaism must be the notion of 
the Covenant, it may safely be taken as an introduction to Essene 

religious thought. The history of mankitxJ and of the Jewish people has 
seen a series of such covenants. God undertool< never to destroy 
manl<ind again by a flood; in exchange, Noah and his descendants 
were required to abstain from stiedding human blood and, on the ritual 
level, from eating animal 'flesh with the life, which is the blood, still in it' 
(Gen. ix, 1-17). To Abraham, who was childless and landless, God 
offered posterity arxJ a country, provided he led a perfect life and 
marked his body and that of all his male progeny with a visible 
reminder of the Covenant between himself and heaven, circumcision 
(Gen. xvii, 1-14). Again, in the days of Moses the Israelites were 
declared 'a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation' (Exod. xix, 5), God's 
special possession, on condition that they obeyed the Torah, the 
divine Teaching of the religious, moral, social and ritual precepts 
recorded in the Pentateuch from Exodus xx and repeated in the 
farewell discourse addressed by IVIoses to his people in the Book of 
Deuteronomy After the conquest of Canaan and the distribution of the 
land to tlie tribes, the fulfilment of God's promise to Abraliam, the 
Covenant was renewed by Joshua and the Israelites reasserted their 
commitment to their heavenly Helper (Jos. xxiv). From then on, the 
biblical story is one of continuous unfaithfulness to the Covenant. But 
God was not to be thwarted by human unworthiness and ingratitude, 
and for the sake of the handful of just men appearing in every 
generation he allowed the validity of the Covenant to endure. Though 
he punished the sinful and the rebellious, he spared the 'remnant' 
because of their fidelity to it. From time to time, saintly leaders of the 
Jewish people, King David and King Josiah before the Babylonian 
exile (2 Sam. vii; 2 Kings xxiii, 1-3) and Ezra the Priest after the return 
from Mesopotamia (Neh. viii-x), persuaded them to remember their 
Covenant with God with solemn vows of repentance and national 
rededication; but the promises were usually short-lived. This would no 
doubt account for the development of an idea in the sixth century BCE 
of a 'new Covenant' founded not so much on undertakings entered into 
by the community as on the inner transformation of every individual 
Jew for whom the will of God was to become, as it were, second 

The time is coming ... when I will make a new Co\«nantwith Israel... This 
is the new Co\enant which I will make with Israel in those da^ ... I will set 
my law within them and write it on their hearts... 

(Jer. XXX/, 31-3; tea. liv, 13) 

It was this same Covenarrt ideology that served as the foutxJation of 
the Qumran Community's basic beliefs. The Essenes not only 
considered themselves to be the 'remnant' of tfieir time, but the 
'remnant' of all time, the final 'remnanf. In the 'age of wrath', while God 
was making ready to annihilate the wicked, their founders had 
repented. They had become the 'Converts of Israel' (cf. CD IV, 2; 
4Q266 fr. 5 i). As a reward for their conversion, the Teacher of 
Righteousness had been sent to establish for them a 'new Covenant', 
which was to be the sole valid form of tfie eternal alliance between 
God and Israel. Consequently their paramount aim was to pledge 
themselves to observe its precepts with absolute faithfulness. 
Convinced that they belonged to a Community which alone interpreted 
the Holy Scriptures correctly, theirs was 'the last interpretation of the 
Law' (4Q266 fr. 11; 270 fr. 7 ii), and they devoted their exile in the 
wilderness to the study of the Bible. Their intention was to do 
according to all that had been 'revealed from age to age, and as the 
Prophets had revealed by His Holy Spirit' (1QS VIII, 14-16; cf. 4Q265 
fr. 7 ii). 

Without an authentic interpretation it was not possible properly to 
understand the Torah. All the Jews of the inter-Testamental era, the 
Essenes as well as their rivals, agreed that true piety entails 
obedience to the Law, but although its guidance reaches into so many 
corners of life - into business and prayer, law court and kitchen, 
marriage-bed and Temple - the 613 positive and negative 
commandments of which it consists still do not provide for all the 
problems encountered, especially those which arose in the centuries 
following the formulation of biblical legislation. To give but one 
example, the diaspora situation was not envisaged by the jurists of an 
autonomous Jewish society. 

Torah interpretation was entrusted to the priests and Levites during 
the first two or three centuries following the Babylonian exile. Ezra and 

his colleagues, the ancient scribes of Israel, 'read from the book of the 
Law... made its sense plain and gave instruction in what was read'. In 
this passage from the Book of Nehemiah viii, 8, Jewish tradition 
acknowledges the Institution of a regular paraphrase of Scripture 
known as Targum, or translation into the vernacular of the members of 
the congregation. When the parties of the Pharisees, Sadducees, 
Essenes, etc., came into being with their different convictions, they 
justified them by interpretations suited to their needs. 

A classic example of idiosyncratic Bible Interpretation in the Scrolls 
concerns a law on marriage. Since no diriectly relevant ruling is given in 
the Pentateuch on whether a niece may marry her uncle, Pharisaic and 
rabbinic Judaism understands this scriptural silence to mean that such 
a union is licit. When the Bible wishes to declare a degree of kinship 
unlawful, it does so: thus we read apropos of marriage between 
nephew and aunt, 'You shall not approach your mother's sister' (Lev 
xviii, 13). Thus a tradition surviving in the Babylonian Talmud is able to 
go so far as even to praise marriage with a 'sister's daughter' and to 
proclaim it as a particularly saintly and generous act comparable to the 
loving-kindness shown to the poor and needy (Yebamoth 62b). The 
Qumran Essenes did not adopt this attitude at ail. On the contrary, they 
regarded an uncle-niece union as straightforward 'fornication', 
interpreted correctly they maintained, the Leviticus precept signifies 
the very opposite of the meaning accepted by their opponents; the 
truth is that whatever applies to men in this respect applies also to 

MDses said, Vbu shall not approach your mother's sister (i.e. your aunt); 
she is your mother's near kirj (Lev xJiu, 13). But although the laws against 
incest are written for men, they also apply to women. WAien, therefore, a 
brother's daughter uncovers the nakedness of her father's brother, she is 
(also his) near kin. 

(CD V, 8-11) 

The Temple Scroll proclaims clearly this prohibition in proper legal 

A man shall not take the daughter of his brother or the daughter of his 
sister for this is abominable. 

(11QTLXVI, 16-17) 

Again, according to the strict views of the sectaries, fidelity to the 
Covenant demanded not only obedience to the Law/, to all that God 
has 'commanded by the hand of Moses', but also adherence to the 
teaching of 'all His servants, the Prophets' (1QS 1 , 2-3). Although not 
expressly stated, this special attention to the Prophets implies, firstly 
that the Essenes subscribed to the principle incorporated Into the 
opening paragraph of the Sayings of the Fathers in the Mishnah that 
the Prophets served as an essential link in the transmission of the Law 
from Moses to the rabbis. 

M3ses recei\«d the Torah from (God on) Sinai and passed it on to 
Joshua; Joshua to the Elders (= Judges): the Elders to the Prophets; and 
the l^phets passed it on to the members of the Great /Assembly (= the 
leaders of Israel in the post-e»lio age). 

(Aboth 1, 1) 

The second inference to be drawn is that the sect believed the 
Prophets to be not only teachers of morality, but also guides in the 
domain of the final eschatological realities. But as In the case of the 
Law, their writings were considered to contain pitfalls for the ignorant 
and the misinformed, and only the Community's sages knew how to 
expound them correctly Properly understood, the Books of Isaiah, 
Hosea and the rest Indicate the right path to be followed in the terrible 
cataclysms of the last days. A simple reading can convey only their 
superficial meaning, but not their profounder significance. The Book of 
Daniel sets the biblical example here when it announces that 
Jeremiah's prediction that the Babylonian domination would last for 
seventy years Is not to be taken literally; the real and final message is 
that seventy times seven years would separate Nebuchadnezzar from 
the coming of the Messiah (Dan. Ix, 21-4). But the Qumran sectaries 
went even further than Daniel. They argued that it is quite impossible to 
discover the meaning without an inspired interpreter because the 

Prophets themselves were ignorarrt of the full import of what they 
wrote. Habakkuk, for instance, was commanded to recount the history 
of the 'final generation', but he did so without having any clear idea of 
how far ahead the eschatological age lay. God 'did not make known to 
him when time would come to an end'. Knowledge of the authentic 
teaching of the Prophets was the supreme talent of the Teacher of 
Righteousness. The surviving Bible commentaries are almost all 
concerned with predictions concerning the ultimate destiny of the 
righteous and the wicked, the tribulations and final triumph of the 
'House of Judah' and the concomitant annihilation of those who had 
rebelled against God. But in addition to this general evidence of the 
subject-matter, the Scrolls directly impute to the Teacher a particular 
God-given insight into the hidden significance of prophecy. He was 
'the Teacher of Righteousness to whom God made known all the 
mysteries... of His servants the Prophets' (IQpHab VII, 1-5). He was 
'the Priest [in whose heart] God set [understanding] that he might 
interpret all the words of His servants the Prophets, through whom He 
foretold all that would happen to His people' (IQpHab 11, 8-10). He 
was the Teacher who 'made known to the latter generations that which 
God had done to the latter generation, the congregation of traitors, to 
those who departed from the way" (CD 1, 12-13). The Teacher's 
interpretation alone, propagated by his disciples, offered true 
enlightenment and guidance. 

Supported in this way by the infallible teaching of the Community, the 
sectary believed himself to be living in the true city of God, the city of 
the Covenant built on the Law and the Prophets (cf. CD VII, 13-18). 
Again and again, the architectural metaphors used In the Scrolls 
suggest security and protection. The sect Is a 'House of Holiness', a 
'House of Perfection and Truth' (IQS VIII, 5, 9), a 'House of the Law' 
(CD XIX (B2), 10, 13); it is a 'sure House' (CD III, 19) constructed on 
solid foundations. Indeed the language used Is reminiscent of Isaiah 
xxviii, 16, and of Jesus' simile about the Church built not on sand but 
on rock (Matth. vii, 24-7; xvi, 18): 

But I shall be as one who enters a fortified city, 
as one who seeks refuge behind a /i/g/j wall ... 

I will [lean on] Thytmth, OmyGod. 

For TTiou wilt set the foundation on rock 

and the fmmewDti< by the measuring-ODrd oijustce; 

and the tried stones [Thou wilt la^^ 

bythe plumb-line [of truth], 

to [build] a mighty [wail] w^ich shall not sway 

and no man entering there shall stagger. 

(1QH XIV [formerly Vl], 24-7) 

Fortified by his membership of the brotherhood, the sectary could even 
carry his notions of solidity and finnness over into his own self so that 
he too became a 'strong tower': 

Thou hast strengthened me 

before the battles of wickedness... 

Thou hast made me like a sfrong tower, a high wall, 

and hast established my edifice upon rock; 

eternal foundations 

serwfor myground, 

and all my rampatis are a tied wall 

which shall not sway 

(IQHxvpbrrneHyVII], 7-9) 


In the ideology of the Old Testament, to be a member of the chosen 
people is synonymous with being party to the Covenant. Israel willingly 
accepts the yoke of the Law given on Sinai, and God in his turn 
acknowledges her as His 'special possession' (Exod. xix, 5): 

For \ou are a people holy to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has 
chosen you to be a people for His own possession, out of all the peoples 
that are on the face of the earth ... \bu shall therefore be careful to do the 
commandment, and the statutes, and the ordinances which I command 
you this day. 

(Deut. vii, 6, 11) 

Theoretically, there is no distinction between election de Jure and 
election de facto: every Jew is chosen. But already in biblical times a 
deep gulf is in fact seen to divide righteous observers of the Covenant 
from the wicked of Israel. Though not deprived of their birthright, the 
unfaithful are viewed as burdened with guilt and as such excluded, 
provisionally at least, from the congregation of the children of God. The 
fully developed concept of election is summarized in the Palestinian 
Talmud by the third-century CE Galilean Rabbi Lazar Expounding the 
words of Deuteronomy quoted above, he comments: 

\Mienthe Israelites do the will of the Holy One, blessed be He, they are 
called sons; but when they do not do His will, they are not called sons. 

(Kiddushin 61c) 

Inevitably, for the Qumran Essenes such a notion of Covenant 
membership was far too elastic. Consistent with their approach to 
legal matters, their attitude in regard to the Covenant was that only the 
initiates of their own 'new Covenant' were to be reckoned among 
God's elect and, as such, united already on earth with the angels of 

God has given them to His chosen ones 

and has caused them to inherit 

the lot of the HolyOnes. 

He has joined their assembly 

to the Sons of Heaven, 

to be a Councii of the Community, 

a foundation of the Buiiding of Hoiiness, 

an eternal Plantation throughout aii ages to come. 

(1QSXI, 7-9) 

They insisted, moreover, on the individual election of each sectary. The 
ordinary Jew envisaged errtry into the congregation of the chosen 
primarily through birth, and secondly through the symbolical initiation of 
an eight-day-old male \rfari submitted to circumcision. An Essene 
became a member of either branch of his sect by virtue of the 

deliberate and personal adult commitment of himself. For this reason, 
as will be remembered, even children bom to married members and 
brought up in their sctiools liad to wait until tlieir twentieth birthday 
before they were allowed to make their solemn vows of entry into the 
Covenant. Also, believing in divine forelcrxswledge, they considered 
their adherence to the 'lot of God' as ttie effect of grace, as having 
been planned for each of them in heaven from all eternity They, the 
elect, were guided by the spirit of truth in the ways of light, while the 
unprivileged, Jew and Gentile alike, were doomed to wander along 
paths of darkness. The section of ttie Community Rule known as the 
Instruction on the Two Spirits gives a fascinating description of these 
two human groups, the chosen and the unchosen. 

The IVIaster shall instruct all the sons of light and shall teach them the 
nature of all the children of men according to the kind of spirit which 

they possess ... 

From the God of Knowledge comes all that is and shall be. Before 
ever they existed He established their whole design, and when, as 
ordained for them, they come into being, it is in accord with His 
glorious design that they accomplish their task without change ... 

He has created man to govern the world, and has appointed for him 
two spirits in which to walk until the time of His visitation: the spirits of 
truth and injustice. Those born of truth spring from a fountain of light, 
but those born of injustice spring from a source of darkness. All the 
children of righteousness are ruled by the Prince of Light and walk in 
the ways of light, but all the children of injustice are ruled by the Angel 
of Darkness and walk in the ways of darkness. The Angel of Darkness 
leads all the children of righteousness astray and until his end, all their 
sins, iniquities, wickedness, and all their unlawful deeds are caused by 
his dominion in accordance with the mysteries of God... 

But the God of Israel and His Angel of Truth will succour all the sons 
of light. For it is He who created the spirits of Light and Darkness and 
founded every action upon them and established every deed [upon] 
their [ways]. And He loves the one everlastingly and delights in its 
works for ever; but ttie counsel of the other He loathes and for ever 
hates its ways. 


Convictions of this l<ind, with their theories of individual election and 
predestination, coupled with a precise knowledge of the boundary 
dividing right from wrong, can lead to self-righteousness and arrogant 
intolerance of the masses thought to be rejected by God. The 
Essenes, however, appear to have concentrated more on the 
blessedness of the chosen than on the damnation of the 
unpredestined. Besides, they could always argue that Jews who 
refused to repent and remained outside the new Covenant were 
responsible for their own doom. 

But the spiritual masters of the Community were doubtless aware of 
the danger of the sin of pride to which their less enlightened brothers 
were exposed and attacked it on three fronts. The Qumran Hymns, 
unlike certain biblical Psalms (e.g. Psalm xxvi) which testify to an acute 
form of sanctimoniousness, never cease to emphasize the sectary's 
frailty, unworthiness and total dependence on God. 

Clay and dustthat I am, 

what can I devise unless Thou wish it, 

and what contri\« unless Thou desire it? 

What strength shall I \r\a\e 

unless TTiou l<eep me upright 

and how shall I understand 

unless by (the spirit) which Thou hast shaped for me? 

(IQH XVIII pbrmeriyx], 5-7) 

Not only is election itself owed to God's grace, but perseverance in the 
way of holiness cannot be counted on unless he offers his continuous 
help and support. 

When the wielded rose against TliyCo\«nant 

and the damned against Thy wonj, 

I said in mysintiilness, 

'I am forsaken by Thy Covenant' 

But calling to mind the might of Thy hand 

and the greatness of Thy compassion, 

I rose and stood ... 

I lean on Thygrace 

and on the multitude of Thy mercies. 

(IQH XII [formerly IV], 34-7) 

Another theme constantly stressed in Essene teaching is that not only 
is God's assistance necessary in order to remain faithful to his Law; 
the very l<nowledge of that Law is a gift from heaven. All their special 
understanding and wisdom comes from God. 

From the source of His righteousness 

Is myjustification, 

and from His man«iious m^teries 

is ttie ligtitin mytieart. 

luVeyes ha>« gazed 

on that which is eternal, 

on wisdom conceaied ifom men, 

on l<nowiedge and wise design 

(hidden) from the sons of men; 

on a fountain of righteousness 

and on a storehouse of power, 

on a spring of glory 

(hidden) fi^m tie assembly of flesh. 

God has gi\en them to His chosen ones 

as an e>«rlasting possession, 

and has caused them to inherit 

the lot of the HolyOnes. 


The sentiments expressed in tlie IHymns, of love and gratitude and 
awareness of God's presence, represent a true religiousness and 
must liave lielped tlie sectary not to allow his life - governed as it was 
by laws and precepts-to slide into one of mere religious formalism. 

Thou hast upheld me with certain truth; 

Thou hast delighted me with ThyHolySplrit 

and [hast opened my heart] till this day... 

The abundance of (Thy) forgiveness is with my steps 

and infinite mercy accompanies Thyjudgementof me. 

Until I am old Thou wilt care for me; 

for myfather knew me not 

and my mother abandoned me to Thee. 

For Thou art a father 

to all [the sons] of Thy truth, 

and as a woman who tenderly loves her babe, 

so dost Thou rejoice in them; 

and as a foster-father bearing a child in his lap, 

so carBstTiiou for all TTiy creatures. 

(IQH XVII pbrmeriy IX], 32-6) 

Whether the average Essene actually succeeded in fulfilling his high 
ideals, we cannot of course know: experience past and present has 
shown that paths to sanctity devised by organized religion are beset 
with snares. As has been noted earlier (pp. 31-2 on 4Q477), in some 
individual cases, moral shortcomings were actually recorded. But there 
can be no doubt of the sectaries' intention. The aim of a holy life lived 
within the Covenant was to penetrate the secrets of heaven in this 
world and to stand before God for ever in the next. Like Isaiah, who 
beheld the seraphim proclaiming 'Holy holy holy, and like Ezekiel, 
who in a trance watched the winged cherubim drawing the divine 
throne-chariot, and like the ancient Jewish mystics who consecrated 
themselves, despite official disapproval by the rabbis, to the 
contemplation of the same throne-chariot and the heavenly Palaces, 
the Essenes, too, strove for a similar mystical knowledge, as one of 
their number testifies in a description of his own vision of the ministers 
of the 'Glorious Face'. 

The [cherujbim prostrate themsel\«s before Him and bless. ^ they rise, a 
whispered divine VDlce [is heard], and there is a roar of praise. When they 
drop their wings, there is a [whisperejd divine WDice. The cherubim bless 
the image of the ttirone-chariot abo\fi the firmament, [and] they praise [the 
majesjty of the luminous fimiament beneath His seat of glory When the 
wheels advance, angels of holiness come and go. From between His 
glorious wheels there is as itwereafieryMSion of most holyspirits. About 
them, the appearance of rivulets of fire in the likeness of gleaming brass, 
and a work of ... radiance in many-coloured glory mar\eiious pigments, 
clearly mingled. The spirits of the living 'gods' mo\« perpetually with the 
glory of the mar\ellous chariot(s). The whispered \oice of blessing 
accompanies the roar of their ad\snce, and they praise the Holy One on 
their way of return. VUien they ascend, they ascend marwiiously and 
when they settle, ttiey stand still. The sound of joyful praise is silenced 
and there is a whispered blessing of the 'gods' in all the camps of God. 



In addition to the worship of God offered through a life of holiness, the 
Qumran sectary had more particularly to perform the ritual acts 
prescribed by Moses in the correct manner and at the righit times. The 
earthly liturgy was interxJed to be a replica of that sung by the choirs of 
angels in the celestial Temple. 

To judge from the many references to it, the time elemerrt both 
calendric and horary was crucial. The Community Rule lays down that 
the Community was not to 'depart from any command of God 
concerning their times; they shall be neither early nor late for any of 
their appointed times, they shall stray neither to the right nor to the left 
of any of His true precepts' (IQS 1, 13-15). This injunction asks for 
exact punctuality in regard to the two daily moments of prayer meant to 
coincide with and replace the perpetual burnt-offering sacrificed in the 
Temple at sunrise and sunset (Exod. xxix, 30; Num. xxviii, 4), but it 
demands in addition a strict observance of tfie sect's own liturgical 

He shall bless Him [with the oflering] of the lips at the times ordained by 
Him: at the beginning of the dominion of light, and at its end when it retires 

to its appointed place; at the beginning of the watches of darkness when 
He unlocks their storehouse and spreads them out, and also at their end 
when they retire before the light; when the hea\«nly lights shine out from 
the dwelling-place of Holiness, and also when they retire to the place of 
Qory; at the entry of the (monthly) seasons on the da^s of the new moon, 
and also at their end when they succeed to one another ... 

(IQS IX, 26-x, 4) 

To understand the peculiarity of Essenism in this respect, a few 
words need to be said about the calendar followed by non-sectarian 
Judaism. Essentially, this was regulated by the movements of the 

moon; months varied in duration from twenty-nine to thirty days and the 
year consisted of twelve months of 354 days. Needless to say, such a 
lunar year does not con-espond to the four seasons determined by the 
movements of the sun In terms of solstices and equinoxes. The 
shortfall of about ten days between the lunar and the solar years was 
therefore compensated for by means of 'irrtercalation', i.e. by Inserting 
after Adar (February/IVIarch), the twelfth month of the year, a 
supplementary 'Second Adar' at the end of every thlrty-sIx lunar 

The Qumran sect rejected this seemingly artificial system and 
adopted instead a chronological reckoning, probably of priestly origin, 
based on the sun, a practice attested also in the Book of Jubilees and 
1 Enoch, and fully laid out In the remains of a series of calendrlcal 
documents (4Q320-30). The outstanding feature of this solar calendar 
was its absolute regularity in that, instead of 354 days, not divisible by 
seven, It consisted of 364 days, I.e. fifty-two weeks precisely Each of 
Its four seasons was thirteen weeks long divided into three months of 
thirty days each, plus an additional 'remembrance' day (IQS x, 5) 
linking one season to another (13x7 = 91 = 3 x 30 + I). In tune In this 
way with the 'laws of the Great Light of heaven' (IQH XII, 5) and not with 
the 'festivals of the nations' (4QpHos=4Q171 11, 16), Qumran saw Its 
calendar as corresponding to 'the certain law from the mouth of God' 
(IQH XX [formerly XII], 9). Its unbroken rhythm meant furthermore that the 
first day of the year and of each subsequent season always fell on the 
same day of the week. For the Essenes this was Wednesday, since 
according to Genesis i, 14-19, It was on the fourth day that the sun and 
the moon were created. Needless to add, the same monotonous 
sequence also implied that all the feasts of the year always fell on the 
same day of the week: Passover, the fifteenth day of the first month, 
was always celebrated on a Wednesday; the Feast of Weeks, the 
fifteenth day of the third month, always on a Sunday; the Day of 
Atonement, the tenth day of the seventh month, on a Friday; the Feast 
of Tabernacles, the fifteenth day of the seventh month, on a 
Wednesday etc. This solar calendar with Its eternal regularity cannot 
of course stand up to the astronomical calculation of 365 days 5 hours 
48 minutes and 48 seconds to the year, but the Scrolls so far 

published give no indication of how the Essenes proposed to cope 
with this inconvenience, or whether indeed they were even aware of it. 

One practical consequence of the sect's adherence to a calendar at 
variance with that of the rest of Judaism was that its feast-days were 
worl<ing days for other Jews and vice versa. The Wicl<ed Priest was 
thus able to travel (journeys of any distance being forbidden on holy 
days of rest) to the 'place of exile' of the Teacher of Righteousness 
while he arxl his followers were celebrating the Day of Atonement (cf. 
above, p. 55). In fact, it is likely that the persecutors of the sect 
deliberately chose that date to oblige the sectaries to attend to them 
on what they considered to be their 'Day of Fasting' and 'Sabbath of 
repose', and thus 'confuse them and cause them to stumble'. The 
same sort of story is told in the Mishnah of the Patriarch Gamaliel II, 
who endeavoured to humiliate Rabbi Joshua ben Hananiah by sending 
him the following instruction: 'I charge you that you come to me with 
your staff and your money on the Day of Atonement according to your 
reckoning' (Rosh ha-Shanah II, 9). 

Another peculiarity of the liturgical calendar of the Community, 
attested in the Temple Scroll, was the division of the year into seven 
fifty-day periods - hence the name pentecontad calendar - each 
marked by an agricultural festival, e.g. the Feast of New Wine, the 
Feast of Oil, etc. A similar system is mentioned by Philo in connection 
with the Therapeutae in his book. On the Contemplative Life. One of 
these festivals, the Feast of the New Wheat, coincided with the Feast 
of Weeks and was for the Essenes/Therapeutae also the principal holy 
day of the year, that of the Renewal of the Covenant, the importance of 
which is discussed above (p. 44). From the Book of Jubilees, where, 
as has been said, the same calendar is followed, it is clear that 
Pentecost (the Feast of Weeks), together with the Feast of the 
Renewal of the Covenant, were celebrated on the fifteenth day of the 
third month (Jub. VI, 17-19; cf also 4Q266 fr. II ii; 270 fr. 7 ii). An 
outline of the ceremony performed on this holy day, with its confession 
of sin and its blessings and curses, is preserved in the Community 
Rule (IQS I, 16-11, 25; cf also 4Q280, 286-7). The sectaries assemble 
for the service in strict hierarchical order: the priests first, ranked in 
order of status, after ttiem the Levites, and lastly 'all ttie people one 

after another in their Thousands, Hundreds, Fifties and Tens, that every 
Israelite may know his place in the Community of God according to the 
everlasting design' (IQS 11, 22-3). Blessing God, the priests then 
recite his acts of loving-kindness to Israel and the Levites recall Israel's 
rebellions against him. This recognition of guilt is fbllowed by an act of 
public repentance appropriate to a community of converts. 

V\fe ha\fi straied! We have [disobeyed!] V\te and our fathers before us have 
sinned and acted wickedly in wail<ing [counter to the precepts] of truth and 
righiteousness. [Aid God hias] judged us and our lathers aiso; but He has 
bestowed His bountifui mercy on us from ewrlasting to e\«riasting. 

(IQS I, 24-11, 1) 

After the confession, the priests solemnly bless the converts of Israel, 
calling down on them in particular the gifts of wisdom and knowledge : 

May He biess y^u with all good and present you from all evil! May He 
lighten yDur heart with iife-giving wisdom and grant yDU eternai l^nowledgel 
h/by He raise His merciful face towards y^u tor everlasting bliss! 

(IQS II, 2-4) 

This paraphrase of the blessing of Israel which God commanded 
IVIoses to transmit to Aaron and his sons in Numbers vi, 24-6, and 
which recalls the fourth of the daily Eighteen Benedictions of traditional 
Judaism, is accompanied by a Levitical curse of the party of Belial and 
a special malediction directed by both priests and Levites at any 
sectary whose conversion may be insincere: 

Cursed be the man who enters this Co\«nant while walking among the 
idols of his heart, who sets up before himself his stumbling-block of sin 
so that he may backslide! Hearing the words of this Covenant he blesses 
himself in his heart and says, 'Peacebewithme,e\«n though I walk in the 
stubbornness of my heart'... 

(IQS II, 11-12) 

The Cave 4 sources of the Damascus Document depict also tfie ritual 

of dismissal from the Community. The Priest overseeing the 
Congregation, addressing God, declares: 

Thou hast cursed those who transgress (the boundary) but we 
maintain it. 

Thereupon 'the dismissed man shall leave arxl whoever eats from 
what is his or greets the man who has been dismissed, and agrees 
with him, ... his judgement shall be complete' (4Q266 fr. 11 III; 270 fr. 7 

Each benediction arKi curse is approved by the wtxjle congregation 
with a twice repeated 'Amen'. 

The ceremony of the Renewal of the Covenant seems to be the only 
rite described in any detail in the Community Rule and the Damascus 
Document, but as the Essenes laid so much emphasis on the full and 
punctilious observance of the Law of Moses it may be tal<en for 
granted that they did not omit the many other basic acts of Jewish 
religion arxl worship. The fact that ttie Community Rule is satisfied 
simply to state without any specification thiat a single deliberate 
transgression of the Mosaic Law would entail irrevocable expulsion 
from the sect implies that the elite sectaries subject to this rule did not 
need detailed guidance: they were supposed to be fully versed in the 
Torah. Legislation addressed to less well-trained members, contained 
in the Damascus Document and in the Temple Scroll, is more 
discursive. Circumcision, for example, which was certainly practised, 
is mentioned in connection with female uncleanness after childbirth 
when Leviticus xii, 3 is cited in passing (4Q266 fr. 6 ii). It is also 
referred to figuratively in the context of severing ttie 'foreskin of the evil 
inclination' (IQS v, 5), or possibly and by implication as the 'Covenant 
of Abraham' mentioned in connection with (Gentile) man-servants (CD 
XII, II; XVI, 6). The laws of purity were also assuredly essential to the 
sect, and some practical guidance is given in IIQTS XLVI-LI, 4Q274- 
84, and MMT. Tine dietary iaws are dealt with in the Damascus 
Document, MMT and the Temple Scroll. For instance, the eating of 
'live creatures' (e.g. iarvae of bees, fish and locusts) is declared to be 
prohibited in CD XII, 11-15. MMT states tliat a live animai foetus must 
be slaughtered before becoming fit for consumption (4Q396 frs. 1 -21 ). 

Further laws appear in the Temple Scroll XLVII-XLVIII. Josephus also 
remarks that an Essene was fbrt)iclden to eat food prepared by people 
not belonging to the brotherhood (War^^ , 143). 

On three other topics, the Qumran sources are less taciturn: ritual 
ablutions, Temple worship and the sacred meal. Discussed already as 
part of the life of the sect, it remains now to consider the doctrinal 
significance of these rites. 

Josephus, as will be recalled, observes that the Essenes took a 
ritual bath twice dally before meals (cf. War 11, 129, 132). 4Q414- 
entitied 'Baptismal llturg/ - deals definitely with such a bathing ritual 
but the text is so mutilated that no readable translation is possible. As 
regards the bath itself, the Damascus Document adds that the 
minimum quantity of clean water required for a valid act of purification 
was to be the amount necessary to cover a man (CD x, 12-13). This is 
not of course an Essene invention, but typically where the IVlishnah 
prescribes a minimum of forty seahs (about 120 gallons), the sect's 
teaching concentrates on the practical purpose of the IVlishnaic rule, 
namely that 'in them men may Immerse themselves' (Mikwaot VII, I), 
and eliminates the obligation of having carefully to measure out what 
that quantity should be. Of greater interest, however, is the theological 
aspect, with its insistence on a correlation between the inner condition 
of a man and the outer rite. The wicked, according to the Community 
Rule, 'shall not enter the water ... for they shall not be cleansed unless 
they turn from their wickedness' (IQS v, 13-14). True purification 
comes from the 'spirit of holiness' and true cleansing from the 'humble 
submission' of the soul to all God's precepts. 

For it is tiirougii tiie spirit of true counsel concerning tlie wa>s of man thiat 
all his sins shall be expiated ... He shall be cleansed from all his sins by 
the spirit of holiness ... and his Iniquity shall be expiated by the spirit of 
uprightness and humility when his flesh Is sprinkled with purifying 
water and sanctified by cleansing water, it shall be made dean by the 
humble submission of his soui to aii the precepts of God. 

(IQS III, 6-9) 

The second issue has to do with the sect's attitude towards the 
Temple and Temple sacrifice. While some Essenes, notwithstanding 

their vow of total fidelity to the Law of Moses, rejected the validity of the 
Sanctuary and refused to participate (temporarily) in its rites (cf. Philo, 
Omnis probus 75; Josephus, Antiquities XVIII, 1 9), they evaded the 
theological dilemma in which this stand might have placed them by 
contending that until the rededication of the Temple, the only true 
worship of God was to be offered in their establishment. The Council 
of the Community was to be the 'Most Holy Dwelling for Aaron' where, 
'without the flesh of holocausts and the fat of sacrifice', a 'sweet 
fragrance' was to be sent up to God, and where prayer was to serve 
'as an acceptable fragrance of righteousness' (IQS VIII, 8-9; IX, 4-5). 
The Community itself was to be the sacrifice offered to God in 
atonement for Israel's sins (IQS VIII, 4-5; 4Q265 fr. 7 ii). 

Besides this evidence in the Community Rule, the equation of the 
Council of the Community with the Temple also appears in the 
Habakkuk Commentary (XII, 3-4) in a most interesting interpretation of 
the word 'Lebanon'. Traditionally 'Lebanon' is understood by ancient 
Jewish interpreters to symbolize 'the Temple'. For example, 
Deuteronomy iii, 25, 'Let me go over ... and see ... that goodly 
mountain and Lebanon', is rendered in Targum Onkelos as, 'Let me 
go over ... and see ... that goodly mountain and the Temple'. The 
Qumran commentator, explaining the Habakkuk text, 'For the violence 
done to Lebanon shall overwhelm you' (Hab. 11, 17), proceeds from 
the belief that the Council of the Community is the one valid Temple. 
He then sets out to prove it by directly associating Lebanon with the 
Council in the conviction that the traditional exegesis will be familiar to 
all his readers: Lebanon = Temple. Temple = Council of the 
Community, ergo Lebanon = Council of the Community.Z^ 

The symbolical approach of the sect to sacrificial worship may 
account for Essene celibacy (where it was practised). Sexual 
abstinence was imposed on those participating in the Temple 
services, both priests and laymen; no person who had sexual 
intercourse (or an involuntary emission, or even any physical contact 
with a menstruating woman) could lawfully take part. More importantly 
still, bearing in mind the central place occupied by prophecy in Essene 
doctrine, clear indications exist in inter-Testamental and rabbinic 
literature that a similar renunciation was associated with the prophetic 

state. Thus Moses, in order always to be ready to hear the voice of 
God, is said by Philo to tiave cleansed himself of 'all calls of mortal 
nature, food, drink, and intercourse with women' (Life of Moses 1 1 , 68- 
9). Consequently, despite the attempt made by Philo and by Josephus 
to attribute the sect's celibacy to misogyny, a more reasonable 
explanation would be that it was thought that lives intended to be wholly 
consecrated to worship and wholly preoccupied with meditation on 
prophecy should be kept wholly, and not just intermittently, pure. 

The common table of the Essenes, the third special cultic subject to 
be examined, has already been discussed in Chapter II (p. 32), but 
one remaining point needs to be mentioned, namely that since the 
rules relating to the daily meal and the messianic meal are the same, it 
is not unreasonable to infer from the New Testament parallel that the 
former was thought to prefigure the latter As is well known, the 
evangelist Matthew portrays the Last Supper as the prototype of the 
great eschatological feast, quoting Jesus as saying: 

I tell >ou, I shall not drink again of this frultof the vine until that day when 
I drink it new with you in my Father's Kingdom. 

(Matth. XXV/, 29) 


The Essene sect was bom into a world of eschatological ferment, of 
intense expectation of the end foretold by the Prophets. Using biblical 
models as vehicles for their own convictions, the Teacher of 
Righteousness and the Community's sages projected an image of the 
future which is elaborate and colourful, but which cannot always be fully 
comprehended by us, partly because some of the associations 
escape us, and partly because of gaps in the extant texts. They 
foresaw in their Community's story the fulfilment of the prophetic 
expectations concerning the salvation of the righteous. It was from their 
ranks, swollen by the re-conversion of some of the 'Simple of Ephraim' 

(4QpNah=4Q1 69 III, 4-5) who had caused such distress by their 
previous apostasy, and by ottier Jewish recruits (IQSa I, 1-5; cf. also 
4Q471 % that the sons of Light would go to battle against the sons of 
Darkness. The Community or the 'exiles of the desert' would move to 
Jerusalem after a preliminary attack on the 'army of Belial', symbolized 
by the 'ungodly of the Covenant' and their foreign allies from the 
environs of Judaea, and an assault on the KIttIm occupying the Holy 
Land. These events were expected to cover a period of six years. The 
seventh, the first sabbatical year of the War, would see the restoration 
of Temple worship. 

Of the remaining thirty-three years of Its duration, four would be 
sabbatical years, so the War would be waged during twenty-nine: 
against the 'sons of Shem' for nine years, against the 'sons of Ham' for 
ten years, and against the 'sons of Japheth' for another ten years (IQM 
l-ll). The final confiict would end with the total defeat of the 'King of the 
KIttIm' and of Satan's hosts, and with the joyful celebrations of the 
Hero, I.e. God, by the victorious sons of Light. 

[Rise up, O Hero! 

Lead offTlnycapti\«s, OGIorious One! 

Gather up] "Riyspoils, OAjthorof mightydeeds! 

Lay Thy hand on the neck of Thine enemies 

and Thyfeet [on the pile of the slain! 

Smite tile nations. Thine ad>«rsaries], 

and dewDur the flesh of ttie sinnerwith Tliysword! 

Rll Thyland witti glory 

and Thine intieritance witti blessing! 

[Let there be a multitude of catUe in Thyfields, 

and in] Thy palaces 

[sil\«rand gold and precious stones]! 

OZion, rejoice greatly! 

Rejoice all you cities of Judah! 

[Keep yaur gates evsr open 

thatttie] hosts of the nations 

[maybe bnought in]! 

Their kings shall sene you 

and all yDur oppressors shall bow down before ^u; 

[theyshall lick the dust of yourfeet. 

Shout for joy, Odaughters of] my people! 

Deck yDursel\«s with glorious jewels 
[and rule o\/er the kingdom of the nations! 
So\«reigntyshall be to the Lord] 
and e\«riasting dominion to Israel. 

(IQMXIX, 2-8) 

Such was to be the course of the War in its earthly dimensions. But it 
would possess in addition a cosmic quality. The hosts of the sons of 
Light, commanded by the 'Prince of the Congregation', were to be 
supported by the angelic armies ied by the 'Prince of Light', also 
known in the Scrolls as the archangel IVIichael or Melchizedek. 
Similarly, the 'ungodly of the Covenant' arKi their Gentile associates 
were to be aided by the demonic forces of Satan, or Belial, or 
Melkiresha'. These two opposing camps were to be evenly matched, 
and God's intervention alone would bring about the destruction of evil 
(IQM XVIII, 1-3). Elsewhere the grand finale is represented as a 
judgement scene in which the heavenly prince Melchizedek 
recompenses 'the Holy Ones of God' and executes 'the vengeance of 
the judgements of God' over Belial and his lot (IIQMelch II, 9, 13). Yet, if 
my interpretation of another non-messianic composition (40246) is 
correct, the symbolical opponent, usurping in this writing the title 'son 
of God' and 'son of the Most High', is said to be overcome by 'the 
people of God' ready to establish with the help of the Great God an 
eternal kingdom. 

The role of the priests and Levites in this imaginary ultimate 
grappling of good with evil, as described in the War Scroll, emerges 
as that of norvcombatants, performing various battle rituals and 
directing the various war activities (advance, retreat, ambush, etc.). 
However, it is more difficult to determine the function of the 
commander-in-chief, the so-called 'Prince of the Congregation'. We 
learn that on his shield will be inscribed his name, the names of Israel, 
Levi and Aaron, and those of the twelve tribes and their chiefs (IQM v, 
1 -2); but little room appears to be left in the War Rule for him to act as 
the Royal Messiah. God himself Is the supreme agent of salvation and 
after him in importance is Michael. 

In some other Scrolls, by contrast, the theme of Messianism is more 

prominent. Complex and sui generis, it envisages sometimes one 
messianic figure, royai, Davidic, triumphant (4Q285, 4Q161, and tlie 
Damascus Document speai<ing of tine Messiali - in tlie singular, cf. 
4Q266 fr. 11 1, 12 - of Aaron and Israel), again and again two, and 
once possibly even three IVIessiahs. The lay King-Messiah, otherwise 
known as the 'Branch of David', the 'Messiah of Israel', the 'Prince of 
[all] the Congregation' and the 'Sceptre', was to usher in, according to 
the sect's book of Blessings, 'the Kingdom of his people' and 'bring 
death to the ungodly" and defeat '[the kings of the] nations' (IQSb v, 21 , 
25, 28). The recently and groundlessly advanced theory that 'the Prince 
of the Congregation, Branch of David' of 4Q285 is a suffering and 
executed Messiah is contradicted both by the immediate context and 
the broader exegetical framework of Isaiah x, 34-xi, I on which 4Q285 
depends (cf 4Q161,frs. 8-10; IQSb v, 20-29). As befits a priestly sect, 
however, the Priest-Messiah comes first in the order of precedence; 
he is also called the 'Messiah of Aaron', the 'Priest', the 'Interpreter of 
the Law' (cf. IQSa II, 20). The King-Messiah was to defer to him and to 
the priestly authority in general in all legal matters: 'As they teach him, 
so shall he judge' (4Qplsa=4Q161 frs. 8-11, 1.23). The 'Messiah of 
Aaron' was to be the final Teacher, 'he who shall teach righteousness 
at the end of days' (CD VI, II). But he was also to preside over the 
battle liturgy (IQM xv, 4; XVI, 13; XVIII, 5) and the eschatological 
banquet (IQSa II, 12-21). It seems that there are some allusions 
suggesting that the eschatological High Priest was expected to 
undergo suffering and humiliation before being glorified (see4Q4lb, 
491 fr. II, 541, fr. 9). 

The third figure, 'the Prophet', is mentioned directly though briefly 
only orK:e: we are told that his arrival was expected together with that 
of the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel (IQS Ix, II). The whole messianic 
phrase Is absent, however, from all the extant 4Q manuscripts of the 
Community Rule. Viewed in the context of inter-Testamental Jewish 
ideas, the Prophet was to be either an Elijah returned as a precursor 
of the Messiah (Mai. iv, 5; 1 Enoch xc, 31, 37; Matth. xi, 13; xvii, 12), or 
as a divine guide sent to Israel In the final days (I Mac. Iv, 46; xlv, 41 ; 
Jn. I, 21), no doubt Identical with 'the Prophet' promised by God to 
Moses ('I will raise up for them a prophet like you ... He shall convey all 

my commands to them', Deut xviii, 15-18; cf. Acts iii, 22-3; vii, 37). An 
identification of 'the Prophet' with a 'new Moses' is supported by the 
inciusion of the Deuteronomy passage in the Messianic Anthology or 
Testimonia from Cave 4 (4Q175) as the first of three messianic proof- 
texts, the second being Balaam's prophecy conceming the Star to rise 
out of Jacob (Num. xxiv, 15-17), and the third, the blessing of Levi by 
Moses (Deut. xxxiii, II), prefiguring respectively the royai Messiah and 
the Priest-Messiah. 

if it is proper to deduce from these not too explicit data that, if ever 
expected by the Qumran sect, the messianic Prophet (or prophetic 
Messiah) was to teach the truth revealed on the eve of the 
establishment of the Kingdom, it would follow that his part was to all 
intents and purposes the same as that attributed by the Qumran 
Essenes to the Teacher of Righteousness. If this is correct, it would not 
be unreasonable to suggest that at some point of the sect's history the 
coming of the Prophet was no longer expected; he was believed to 
have already appeared in the person of the Teacher of Righteousness. 

The evidence available does not permit categorical statements on 
the sectaries' views about what was to follow the days of the 
Messiahs. Some kind of metamorphosis was awaited by them, as is 
clear from the Community Rule - 'until the determined end, and until the 
Renewal' (IQS IV, 25). But one cannot be sure that it was understood 
as synonymous with the new creation of the Apocalypses of Ezra (vii, 
75) and Baruch (xxxii, 6). Similarly the 'new Jerusalem' described in 
various manuscripts (cf. IQ32; 2Q24; 4Q554-555; 5Q15; 11Q18) does 
not match by definition the Holy City descending from above of I Enoch 
(xc, 28-9) or Revelation xxi, but could be an earthly city rebuilt 
according to the plans of angelic architects. 

As for the afterlife proper, and the place it occupied in Essene 
thought, for many centuries in the biblical age Jews paid little attention 
to this question. They believed with most peoples in antiquity that after 
death the just and wicked alike would share a miserable, shadowy 
existence In Sheol, the underworld, where even God is forgotten: 'Turn, 
O Lord, save my life,' cries the psalmist, 'for in death there is no 
remembrance of thee; in Sheol who can give thee praise?' (Ps. vi, 5; 
cf. Isa. xxxviii, 18; Ps. Ixxxviii, 10-12, etc.) The general hope was for a 

long and prosperous life, many children, a peaceful death in the midst 
of one's family, and burial In the tomb of one's fathers. Needless to 
say, with this simple outlook went a most sensitive appreciation of the 
present time as being the only moment In which man can be with God. 

Eventually, the Innate fear of death, and the dissatisfaction of later 
biblical thinl<ers with a divine justice that allowed the wicl<ed to flourish 
on earth and the just to suffer, led to attempts In the post-exilic era to 
solve this fundamental dilemma. The idea of resurrection, or rather of 
the reunification of body and soul after death, first appears as a 
metaphor In Ezeklel's vision of the re-blrth of the Jewish nation after 
the Babylonian captivity as the re-anlmatlon of dry bones (Ezek. xxxvll; 
cf. also 4Q385 frs. 2-3). Later, after the historical experience of 
martyrdom under the persecution of Antlochus Epiphanes, resurrection 
was expected to be tfie true reward of individuals who freely gave their 
lives for God — I.e. for their religion (Dan. xll, 2; 2 Mac. vll, 9; xll, 44; xlv, 
46, etc.). At the same time, the notion of Immortality also emerged, the 
Idea that the righteous are to be vindicated and live for ever in God's 
presence. This view Is developed fully In the Greek apocryphal Book of 
Wisdom (III, l-V, 16). 

Josephus tells us that the Essenes subscribed to this second school 
of thought. According to him, they adopted a distinctly Hellenistic 
concept of Immortality holding the flesh to be a prison out of which the 
Indestructible soul of the just escapes Into limitless bliss 'In an abode 
beyond the ocean' after Its final deliverance (War II, 154-8). 
Resurrection, implying a retum of the spirit to a material body, can thus 
play no part In this scheme. 

Until recently the Scrolls themselves have not been particularly 
helpful. The Hymns Include equivocal statements such as, 'Hoist a 
banner, O you who He In the dust! O bodies gnawed by worms, raise 
up an ensign ...!' (1QH XIV [formerly VG, 34-5; cf XIX [formerly xl], 10- 
14), which may connote bodily resurrection. On the other hand, the 
poet's language may just be allegorical. Immortality, as distinct from 
resurrection. Is better attested. The substance of Josephus' account Is 
confirmed, though not surprisingly without any typically Hellenistic 
colouring (no doubt introduced by him to please his Greek readers). 
The Community Rule, discussing the reward of the righteous and the 

wicked, assures the just of 'eternal joy in life without end, a crown of 
glory and a gannent of majesty in unending light' (IQS IV, 7-8), and 
sinners of 'eternal torment and endless disgrace together with 
shameful extinction in the fire of the dark regions' (IQS IV, 12-13). It Is 
Interesting to observe that immortality was not conceived of as an 
entirely new state, but rather as a direct continuation of the position 
attained on entry irrto the Community From that momerrt, the sectary 
was raised to an 'everlasting height' and joined to the 'everlasting 
Council', the 'congregation of the Sons of Heaven' (1QH xi [formerly HI], 

Shortly after the 'liberation' of the Scrolls in 1991 a previously 
unknown poetic text, usually designated as the 'Resurrection fragment 
(4Q521), surfaced which, echoing Isaiah bd, 1, describes God in the 
age of the Messiah as healing the wounded and reviving the dead. If 
this poem is an Essene composition and not a psalm dating to the late 
biblical period, It can be said that one out of many hundreds of Qumran 
manuscripts definitely testifies to the secfs belief In bodily 

In sum, the portrait of the sectary as It Is reflected In his religious 
Ideas and Ideals bears the marks of a fastidious and deeply 
committed observance of the Mosaic Law, an overwhelming 
assurance of the correctness of his beliefs, and certainty of his own 
eventual salvation. But whereas these characteristics may strike 
readers today as far too self-confident, one would do well not to 
overlook other traits conspicuous, In particular, In the Essenes' prayers 
and hymns, which testify to an absolute dependence on the Almighty 
and a total devotion to what was believed to be God's cause. 

For without Thee no wayis perfect 

and without TTiy will nothing is done. 

ItisTliouwho hast taught all knowledge 

and all things come to pass by Thy will. 

There is none beside Thee to dispute Thy counsel 

or to understand all TTiy holy design, 

or to contemplate the depth of Thymjsteries 

and the power ofThy might 

Who can endure Thyglory, 

and what is the son of man 

in the midst of Thy wonderful deeds? 

What shall one born of woman 

be accounted before Thee? 

Kneaded fhjm tie dust 

his abode is tlie nourisliment of worms. 

He is but a shape, but moulded day, 

and inclines towards dust 

(IQSXI, 17-22) 

List of Abbreviations 

BAR Biblical Arcbaeolofy Revifw 

BASOR Bullrlin of :he Ammran Schools tfOritmul Setanh 

CBQ Cnhul:. HiHiail Quarterly 

CD Cairo Damascus Document 

OJO Diiama m thijmttm Daat. (Mbnl igj^ 

DSS Dead Sa ScraOi 

DSSV R.EUeniti>iiindM.Wiie,XkI3M<jtejMfrUHPwra« 

Shaftesbuiy/Kockpoc^ Mm*, 199a 

Fr. Fngment 

f^P E. Schiirer. G. Vermes, F Milhr nd M. GoodnwB, 

I 111. l-dinlniriih. S ^7 

lEJ Israel Exploration Journal 

JBL Journal of Biblical Litcraturt 

JJS Journal ofJev.'isb Smdtes 

JNES Journal of Near Eastern Stttdits 

JQR Jru:isb Quarterly Review 

JSJ Jnurniil for ihi- Stmiy ofJmAum 

JSS '■/ Sf/niri, Studitt 

iM AUlhamah''\\'ar Rule 

MMT MtprnMa^MM^ammObmaMat^hnr 

MQC J. IVeboDe Barren and L.\%gasMo«iiMi;«di^3fcJMU^ 

Qltmran Confess I'^tji. \*<>ls. I-II, t-HHw>, I99X 

NTS Nni- TesiiiMciti S:ndii-- 

p /><vf/'fj-=5cctanan Bible commentary 

Ps^ Ps.ilms Scroll a=iiQPs» 

Q Quinran cave (iQ, 2Q, etcaQumnn cave i, 2, etc.) 

XQ BuHfJfQmmtm 

S SMMaComiiniiiityRiiloiQS 

Sa Serekb: Appendix a=Messianic RulcslQS* 

Sli Srrrk-h: ApiKnilix l)=Blissini;s i (,)SI) 

S-D Hybrid Communily Rulc-Uamascus Documeot (|Q>65) 

TS HHiikScnifoiQTS 

UDSS A PnUmimmj ttHm ^ttt UfnUAtiD-tSmSotmi^ 
ed. B. Z. lUcfaolder and M. G. AbegK I^Uagm. 1991-5. 

Note on This Translation 

The purpose of this translation is to enable the reader to come into 
direct contact with the literary works found at Qumran. The English 
does not follow slavishly the Hebrew and Aramaic originals but aims at 
being faithful, intelligible and as far as possible readable. For this 
reason the Hebrew word order had to be altered and the numbering of 
the English lines, which often did not correspond to those of the 
manuscript, had to be sacrificed. However, since the 1995 fourth 
Penguin edition, every fifth line of the manuscript has been indicated in 
the margin of the translation. 

As stated in the preface, only meaningful texts are included in this 
volume, with the occasional exception of some broken lines which 
nevertheless reveal important information. When the same writing is 
extant in several manuscripts, the translation either represents a 
composite text, or indicates significant variarrts, but identical 
passages are not normally repeated. Experts are referred to the DJD 

Lacunae impossible to complete with any measure of confidence 
are indicated by dots in the translation. Texts supplied from a different 
manuscript of the same document appear between { }. Hypothetical 
but likely reconstructions are placed between [ ] and glosses 
necessary for fluency between ( ). Biblical quotations appearing in the 
text are printed In italics, as well as the titles and headings which figure 
in the manuscripts. Each scroll is divided into columns. The beginning 
of each of these columns is indicated in the translation by bold Roman 
numerals: I, II, III, etc. The word vacat Indicates an empty space in the 

Finally, I wish to ackrowledge here the considerable debt we all owe 
to J. T. Milik and J. Strugnell for their pioneering decipherment of many 
ofthe Cave 4 texts. 

A. The Rules 

'The Manual of Discipline', Israel Museum, Jerusalem 

The Community Rule 

(IQS, 4Q255-64, 4Q280, 286-7, 4Q502, 5QII, 13) 

Discovered in Cave I, tlie eleven relatively well-preserved colunnns of 
this manuscript (IQS) were first published in 1 951 by M. Burrows under 
the title The Manual of Discipline (The Dead Sea Scrolls of St Mark's 
Monastery, II, New Haven). Important fragments of ten other 
manuscripts of the Rule containing a certain number of variant 
readings were also found in Cave 4 (4QS^"' = 4Q255-64), and two 
small fragments in Cave 5(5Q11=1QS II, 4-7 and 13 quoting IQS 111,4- 
5 and II, 19). Qther citations of the Community Rule, especially the 
penal code from 1QS VII, may be found in the 4Q fragments of the 
Damascus Document (cf. 4Q266, fr. 10 and 270, fr. 7) and in the 
hybrid S-D (4Q265). The latter quotes also from 1QS IV, VI and VIII, 
Finally 4Q502, fr 16 includes a quotation from IQS IV, 4-6. See also 
1 1Q29 in DJD, XXIII, 433-4, quoting IQS VII, 23. 

The 1Q manuscript bears the stamp of editorial modification. For 
instance, in column x the original 'I will concea/ knowledge with 
discretion' is corrected to 'I will impart knowledge with discretion'. The 
section covered by columns VIII-IX was particularly subjected to 
alteration as indicated by corrections and interlinear additions in 1 QS, 
but remarkably none of these appears in the 408 manuscripts. The 
same section is considerably abridged in 408^=40259, where the 
text jumps from 108 VIII, 15 directlyto ix, 12. 

The Community Rule is probably one of the oldest documents of the 
sect; its composition may have originated around 100 BCE, and the 
Cave I copy itself is said to have been produced during the quarter of a 
century following that date. It seems to have been intended for the 
Community's teachers, for its Masters or Guardians, and contains 
extracts from liturgical ceremonies, an outline of a tractate on the 

spirits of trutli and faisefiood, statutes concerned witli initiation into tine 
sect and witli its common iife, organization and discipline, a penai 
code, and finaiiy a poetic dissertation on the fundamental religious 
duties of the Master and his disciples, and on the sacred seasons 
proper to the Community. 

Literary analysis suggests that the main document begins at 1 QS v, 
1 . This is where AQS'^ (=4Q258) starts. The preceding columns in 1QS 
l-IV prefix to the Rule proper a liturgical text (1QS 1, l-lll, 11) and the 
probably independent tractate on the two spirits (1QS III, 12-IV, 25). 
Among the 4Q manuscripts only4QS'^ (=4Q256) contains remnants of 
all the sections of 1 QS. The other documents represent either 1 QS l-IV 
or 1QS V-Xl. 4QS^ {4Q259) substitutes, it seems, the text of 4QOtot 
(4Q3 1 9) for that of 1 QS X-XI. 

There are, to my knowledge, no writings in ancient Jewish sources 
parallel to the Community Rule, but a similar type of literature 
flourished among Christians between the second and fourth centuries, 
the so-called 'Church Orders' represented by works such as the 
Didache, the Didascalia, the Apostolic Constitution. 

The contents of 1QS may be divided into three main sections, but 
further subheadings appear in the text itself; 

1. Entry into the Covenant, followed by an Instruction on the two 
spirits (l-IV). 

2. Statutes relating to the Council of the Community (V-IX). 

3. Directives addressed to the Master, and the Master's Hymn 

Some of the variant readings appearing In the Cave 4 manuscripts 
have been adopted In this translation, but the significantly different 
texts of 4QS'' (4Q258) and 408^ (4Q259) will be appended to 1 QS. 

For the editio princeps of 1QS, see M. Burrows eta/.. The Dead 
Sea Scrolls of St Mark's Monastery Vol.11, Fasc. 2:Plates and 
transcription of the Manual of Discipline, 1951. Of. also J. H. 
Charlesworth et ai, eds.. The Dead Sea Scrolls Vol. I: Rule of the 
Community and Related Documents, 1994, 1-51. S. Metso, The 
Textual Development of the Qumran Community Rule (1997). 


I [The Master shall teach the saijnts to live(?) {according to the Book} 
(4Q255, 257) of the Community [Rul]e, that they may seek God with a 
whole heart and soul, and do what is good and right before Him as He 
commanded by the hand of Moses and all His servants the Prophets; 
that they may love all that He has chosen and hate all that He has 
rejected; that they may abstain from all evil and hold fast to all good; 
that they may practise truth, righteousness, and justice upon earth and 
no longer stubbornly follow/ a sinful heart and lustful eyes, committing all 
manner of evil. He shall admit into the Covenant of Grace all those who 
have freely devoted themselves to the observance of God's precepts, 
that they may be joined to the counsel of God and may live perfectly 
before Him in accordance with all that has been revealed concerning 
their appointed times, and that they may love all the sons of light, each 
according to his lot in God's design, and hate all the sons of darkness, 
each according to his guilt in God's vengeance. 

All those who freely devote themselves to His truth shall bring all their 
knowledge, powers and possessions into the Community of God, that 
they may purify their knowledge In the truth of God's precepts and 
order their powers according to His ways of perfection and all their 
possessions according to His righteous counsel. They shall not depart 
from any command of God concerning their times; they shall be neither 
early nor late for any of their appointed times, they shall stray neither to 
the right nor to the left of any of His true precepts. All those who 
embrace the Community Rule shall enter into the Covenant before God 
to obey all His commandments so that they may not abandon Him 
during the dominion of Belial because of fear or terror or affliction. 

On entering the Covenant, the Priests and Levites shall bless the 
God of salvation and all His faithfulness, and all those entering the 
Covenant shall say after them, 'Amen, Amen!' 

Then the Priests shall recite the favours of God manifested in His 
mighty deeds and shall declare all His merciful grace to Israel, and the 
Levites shall recite the iniquities of the children of Israel, all their guilty 
rebellions and sins during the dominion of Belial. And after them, all 

those entering the Covenant shall confess and say: 'We have strayed! 
We have [disobeyed!] We and our fathers before us have sinned and 
acted wickedly in walking [counter to the precepts] of truth and 
righteousness. [And God has] judged us and our fathers also; II but He 
has bestowed His bountiful mercy on us from everiasting to 
everlasting.' And the Priests shall bless all the men of the lot of God 
who walk perfectly in all His ways, saying: 'May He bless you with all 
good and preserve you from all evil! IVlay He lighten your heart with life- 
giving wisdom and grant you eternal knowledge! IVlay He raise His 
merciful face towards you for everlasting bliss!' 

And the Levites shall curse all the men of the lot of Belial, saying: 'Be 
cursed because of all your guilty wickedness! May He deliver you up 
for torture at the hands of the vengeful Avengers! IVlay He visit you with 
destruction by the hand of all the Wreakers of Revenge! Be cursed 
without mercy because of (4Q256) the darkness of your deeds! Be 
damned in the shadowy place of everlasting fire! May God not heed 
when you call on Him, nor pardon you by blotting out your sin! May He 
raise His angry face towards you for vengeance! May there be no 
"Peace" for you in the mouth of those who hold fast to the Fathers!' 
And after the blessing and the cursing, aii those entering the Covenant 
shall say, 'Amen, Amen!' 

And the Priests and Levites shall continue, saying: 'Cursed be the 
man who enters this Covenant while waiking among the idols of his 
heart, who sets up before himself his stumbiing-biock of sin so that he 
may backsiide! Hearing the words of this Covenant, he blesses 
himself in his heart and says, "Peace be with me, even though I walk in 
the stubbornness of my heart" (Deut. xxix, 18-19), whereas his spirit, 
parched (for iack of truth) and watered (with iies), shall be destroyed 
without pardon. God's wrath and His zeal for His precepts shall 
consume him in everiasting destruction. All the curses of the Covenant 
shall cling to him and God wiii set him apart for evil. He shall be cut off 
from the midst of all the sons of light, and because he has turned aside 
from God on account of his idols and his stumbling-block of sin, his lot 
shall be among those who are cursed for ever.' And after them, all 
those entering the Covenant shall answer and say, 'Amen, Amen!' 

Thus shall they do, year by year, for as long as ttie dominion of Belial 

endures. The Priests shall enter first, ranked one after another 
according to the perfection of their spirit; then the Levites; and thirdly, 
all the people one after arrather in their Thousands, HurxJreds, Fifties, 
and Tens, that every Israelite may know his place in ttie Community of 
God according to the everlasting design. No man shall move down 
from his place nor move up from his allotted position. For according to 
the holy design, they shall all of them be in a Community of truth and 
virtuous humility, of loving-kindness and good intent one towards the 
other, and (they shall all of them be) sons of the everlasting Company. 

No man [shall be in the] Community of His truth wtio refuses to enter 
[the Covenant of] God so that he may walk in the stubbomness of his 
heart, for III his soul detests the wise teaching of just laws. He shall not 
be counted among the upright for he has not persisted in the 
conversion of his life. His knowledge, powers, and possessions shall 
not enter the Council of the Community for whoever ploughs the mud 
of wickedness returns defiled (?). He shall not be justified by that which 
his stubborn heart declares lawful, for seeking the ways of light he 
looks towards darkness. He shall not be reckoned among the perfect; 
he shall neither be purified by atonement, nor cleansed by purifying 
waters, nor sanctified by seas and rivers, nor washed clean with any 
ablution. Unclean, unclean shall he be. For as long as he despises the 
precepts of God he shall receive no instruction in the Community of His 

For it is through the spirit of true counsel concerning the ways of man 
that all his sins shall be expiated, that he may contemplate the light of 
life. He shall be cleansed from all his sins by the spirit of holiness 
uniting him to His truth, and his iniquity shall be expiated by the spirit of 
uprightness and humility And when his flesh is sprinkled with purifying 
water and sanctified by cleansing water, it shall be made clean by the 
humble submission of his soul to all the precepts of God. Let him then 
order his steps {to walk} (4Q255) perfectly In all the ways commanded 
by God concerning the times appointed for him, straying neither to the 
right nor to the left and transgressing none of His words, and he shall 
be accepted by virtue of a pleasing atonement before God and it shall 
be to him a Covenant of the everiasting Community. 

The Master shall Instruct all the sons of light and shall teach them the 
nature of all the children of men according to the kind of spirit which 
they possess, the signs Identifying their works during their lifetime, 
their visitation for chastisement, and the time of their reward. 

From the God of Knowledge comes all that Is and shall be. Before 
ever they existed He established their whole design, and when, as 
ordained for them, they come into being, it is in accord with His 
glorious design that they accomplish their task without change. The 
laws of all things are in His hand and He provides them with all their 

He has created man to govern the worid, and has appointed for him 
two spirits in which to walk until the time of His visitation: the spirits of 
truth and injustice. Those born of truth spring from a fountain of light, 
but those born of injustice spring from a source of darkness. All the 
children of righteousness are ruled by the Prince of Light and walk in 
the ways of light, but all the children of injustice are ruled by the Angel 
of Darkness and walk in the ways of darkness. The Angel of Darkness 
leads all the children of righteousness astray and until his end, all their 
sin, iniquities, wickedness, and all their unlawful deeds are caused by 
his dominion in accordance with the mysteries of God. Every one of 
their chastisements, and every one of the seasons of their distress, 
shall be brought about by the rule of his persecution; for all his allotted 
spirits seek the overthrow of the sons of light. 

But the God of Israel and His Angel of Truth will succour all the sons 
of light For it is He who created the spirits of Light and Darkness and 
founded every action upon them and established every deed [upon] 
their [ways]. And He loves the one IV everlastingly and delights in its 
works for ever; but the counsel of the other He loathes and for ever 
hates its ways. 

These are their ways In the worid for the enlightenment of the heart 
of man, and so that all the paths of true righteousness may be made 
straight before him, and so that the fear of the laws of God may be 
instilled in his heart: a spirit of humility, patience, abundant charity 
unending goodness, understanding, and intelligence; (a spirit of) 
mighty wisdom which trusts In all the deeds of God and leans on His 
great loving-kindness; a spirit of discernment in every purpose, of zeal 

for just laws, of holy intent with steadfastness of heart, of great charity 
towards all the sons of truth, of admirable purity which detests all 
unclean idols, of humble corKluct sprung from an understanding of all 
things, and of faithful concealment of the mysteries of truth. These are 
the counsels of the spirit to the sons of truth in this world. 

And as for the visitation of all wtio walk in this spirit, it shall be 
healing, great peace in a long life, and fruitfulness, together with every 
everlasting blessing and eternal joy in life without end, a crown of glory 
and a garment of majesty in unending light. 

But the ways of the spirit of falsehood are these: greed, and 
slackness in the search for righteousness, wickedness and lies, 
haughtiness and pride, falseness and deceit, cruelty and abundant evil, 
ill-temper and much folly and brazen insolence, abominable deeds 
(committed) in a spirit of lust, and ways of lewdness in the service of 
uncleanness, a blaspheming tongue, blindness of eye and dullness of 
ear, stiffness of neck and heaviness of heart, so that man walks in all 
the ways of darkness and guile. 

And the visitation of all who walk in this spirit shall be a multitude of 
plagues by the hand of all the destroying angels, everlasting damnation 
by the avenging wrath of the fury of God, eternal torment and endless 
disgrace together with shameful extinction in the fire of the dark 
regions. The times of all their generations shall be spent in sorrowful 
mourning and in bitter misery and in calamities of darkness until they 
are destroyed without remnant or survivor. 

The nature of all the children of men is ruled by these (two spirits), 
and during their life all the hosts of men have a portion of their divisions 
and walk in (both) their ways. And the whole reward for their deeds 
shall be, for everlasting ages, according to whether each man's portion 
in their two divisions is great or small. For God has established the 
spirits in equal measure until the final age, and has set everlasting 
hatred between their divisions. Truth abhors the works of injustice, and 
injustice hates all the ways of truth. And their struggle is fierce in all 
their arguments for they do not walk together. But in the mysteries of 
His understanding, and in His glorious wisdom, God has ordained an 
end for injustice, and at the time of the visitation He will destroy it for 
ever. Then truth, which has wallowed in the ways of wickedness during 

the dominion of injustice until the appointed time of judgement, shall 
arise in the world for ever. God will then purify every deed of man with 
His truth; He will refine for Himself the human frame by rooting out all 
spirit of injustice from the bounds of his flesh. He will cleanse him of all 
wicked deeds with the spirit of holiness; like purifying waters He will 
shed upon him the spirit of truth (to cleanse him) of all abomination and 
Injustice. And he shall be plunged into the spirit of purification, that he 
may Instruct the upright in the knowledge of the Most High and teach 
the wisdom of the sons of heaven to the perfect of way. For God has 
chosen them for an everiasting Covenarrt and all the glory of Adam 
shall be theirs. There shall be no more lies and all the works of Injustice 
shall be put to shame. 

Until now ttie spirits of truth and injustice struggle in the tiearts of 
men and they walk in both wisdom and folly. According to his portion of 
truth so does a man hate injustice, and according to his inheritance in 
the reaim of injustice so is he wicked and so hates truth. For God has 
established the two spirits in equal measure until the determined end, 
and until the Renewal, and He knows the reward of their deeds from all 
eternity He has allotted them to the children of men that they may know 
good [and evil, and] that the destiny of all the living may be according 
to the spirit within [them at the time] of the visitation. 

y And this is the Ruie for the men of the Community who have 
freeiy pledged themselves to be converted from all evil and to 
cling to all His commandments according to His will 

They shall separate from the congregation of the men of injustice 
and shall unite, with respect to the Law and possessions, under the 
authority of the sons of Zadok, the Priests who keep the Covenant, and 
of the multitude of the men of the Community who hold fast to the 
Covenant. Every decision concerning doctrine, property and justice 
shall be determined by them. 

They shall practise truth and humility in common, and justice and 
uprightness and charity and modesty in aii their ways. No man shall 
walk in the stubbornness of his heart so that he strays after his heart 

and eyes and evil inclination, but he shall circumcise in the Community 
the foreskin of evil irxilination and of stiffness of neck that they may lay 
a foundation of truth for Israel, for the Community of the everlasting 
Covenant. They shall atone for all those in Aaron who have freely 
pledged themselves to holiness, and for those in Israel who have freely 
pledged themselves to the House of Truth, and for those who join them 
to live in community and to take part in the trial and judgement and 
condemnation of all those who transgress the precepts. 

On joining the Community, this shall be their code of behaviour with 
respect to all these precepts. 

Whoever approaches the Courrcil of the Community shall enter the 
Covenant of God in the presence of all who have freely pledged 
themselves. He shall undertake by a binding oath to retum with all his 
heart and soul to every commandment of the Law of Moses in 
accordance with all that has been revealed of it to the sons of Zadok, 
the Priests, Keepers of the Covenant and Seekers of His will, and to 
the multitude of the men of their Covenant who together have freely 
pledged themselves to His truth and to walking in the way of His 
delight. And he shall undertake by the Covenant to separate from all 
the men of injustice who walk in the way of wickedness. 

For they are not reckoned in His Covenant. They have neither 
inquired nor sought after Him concerning His laws that they might know 
the hidden things in which they have sinfully erred; and matters 
revealed they have treated with insolence. Therefore Wrath shall rise 
up to condemn, and Vengeance shall be executed by the curses of the 
Covenant, and great chastisements of eternal destruction shall be 
visited on them, leaving no remnant. They shall not enter the water to 
partake of the pure Meal of the men of holiness, for they shall not be 
cleansed unless they turn from their wickedness: for all who transgress 
His word are unclean. Likewise, no man shall consort with him in 
regard to his work or property lest he be burdened with the guiit of his 
sin. He shall indeed keep away from him in all things: as it is written. 
Keep amy from all that is false (Exod. xxiii, 7). No member of the 
Community shall follow them in matters of doctrine and justice, or eat 
or drink anything of theirs, or take anything from them except for a 
price; as it is written. Keep amy from the man in viJiose nostrils is 

breath, for v\herein is he counted? (tea. ii, 22). For all those not 
reckoned in His Covenant are to be set apart, together with all that Is 
theirs. None of the men of holiness shall lean upon works of vanity: for 
they are all vanity who know not His Covenant, and He will blot from the 
world all them that despise His word. All their deeds are defilement 
before Him, and all their property unclean. 

But when a man enters the Covenant to walk according to all these 
precepts that he may be joined to the holy Congregation, they shall 
examine his spirit in community with respect to his understanding and 
practice of the Law, under the authority of the sons of Aaron wtxj have 
freely pledged themselves in the Community to restore His Covenant 
and to heed all the precepts commanded by Him, and of the multitude 
of Israel who have freely pledged themselves in the Community to 
return to His Covenant. They shall inscribe them in order, one after 
another, according to their understanding and their deeds, that every 
one may obey his companion, the man of lesser rank obeying his 
superior And they shall examine their spirit and deeds yearly, so that 
each man may be advanced in accordance with his understanding and 
perfection of way, or moved down in accordance with his distortions. 
They shall rebuke one another in truth, humility and charity. Let no man 
address his companion with anger, or ill-temper, or obdu[racy, or with 
envy prompted by (4Q258)] the spirit of wickedness. Let him not hate 
him [because of his uncircumcised] heart, but let him rebuke him on 
the very same day lestVI he incur guilt because of him. And 
furthermore, let no man accuse his companion before the 
Congregation without having admonished him in the presence of 

These are the ways in which all of them shall walk, each man with his 
companion, wherever they dwell. The man of lesser rank shall obey the 
greater in matters of work and money They shall eat in common and 
bless in common and deliberate in common. 

Wherever there are ten men of the Council of the Community there 
shall not lack a Priest among them. And they shall all sit before him 
according to their rank and shall be asked their counsel in all things in 
that order. And when the table has been prepared for eating, and the 
new wine for drinking, tfie Priest shall be the first to stretch out his hand 

to bless the firstfruits of the bread and new wine. 

And where the ten are, there shall never lack a man among them 
who shall study the Law continually, dayarxJ night, concerning the right 
conduct of a man with his companion. And the Congregation shall 
watch In community for a third of every night of the year, to read the 
Book and to study the Law and to bless together. 

This is the Ruie for an Assembiy of the Congregation 

Each man shall sit In his place: the Priests shall sit first, and the 
elders second, and all the rest of the people according to their rank. 
And thus shall they be quesfioned corxieming the Law, and concerning 
any counsel or matter coming before the Congregation, each man 
bringing his knowledge to the Council of the Community. 

No man shall Interrupt a companion before his speech has ended, 
nor speak before a man of higher rank; each man shall speak in his 
turn. And in an Assembly of the Congregation no man shall speak 
without the consent of the Congregation, nor indeed of the Guardian of 
the Congregation. Should any man wish to speak to the Congregation, 
yet not be in a position to question the Council of the Community let 
him rise to his feet and say: 'I have something to say to the 
Congregation.' If they command him to speak, he shall speak. 

Every man, born of Israel, who freely pledges himself to join the 
Council of the Community shall be examined by the Guardian at the 
head of the Congregation concerning his understanding and his 
deeds. If he is fitted to the discipline, he shall admit him into the 
Covenant that he may be converted to the truth and depart from all 
injustice; and he shall instruct him in all the rules of the Community. And 
later, when he comes to stand before the Congregation, they shall all 
deliberate his case, and according to the decision of the Council of the 
Congregation he shall either enter or depart. After he has entered the 
Council of the Community he shall not touch the pure Meal of the 
Congregation until one {full} (4Q256) year is completed, and until he 
has been examined concerning his spirit and deeds; nor shall he have 
any share of the property of the Congregation. Then wtien he has 

completed one year within the Community, ttie Congregation shall 
deliberate his case with regard to his understanding and observance 
of ttie Law. ArxJ if it be his destiny, according to the judgemerrt of the 
Priests arxl the multitude of ttie men of their Covenant, to enter the 
company of the Community, his property and eamings shall be handed 
over to the Bursar of ihe Congregation w\no shall register It to his 
account and shall not spend it for the Congregation. He shall not touch 
the Drink of the Congregation until he has completed a second year 
among the men of the Community. But when the second year has 
passed, he shall be examined, and if It be his destiny, according to the 
judgement of the Congregation, to enter the Community, then he shall 
be inscribed among his brethren in the order of his rank for the Law, 
and for justice, and for the pure IVIeal; his property shall be merged and 
he shall offer his counsel and judgement to the Community. 

These are the Rules by which they shall judge at a Community 
(Court o1) Inquiry according to the cases 

If one of them has lied deliberately In matters of property, he shall be 
excluded from the pure Meal of the Congregation for one year and 
shall do penance with respect to one quarter of his food. 

Whoever has answered his companion with obstinacy, or has 
addressed him impatiently going so far as to take no account of the 
dignity of his fellow by disobeying tine order of a brother Inscribed 
before him, he has taken the law Into his own hand; therefore he shall 
do penance for one year [and shall be excluded]. 

If any man has uttered the [Most] Venerable Name VII even though 
frivolously or as a result of shock or for any other reason whatever, 
while reading the Book or blessing, he shaii be dismissed and shall 
return to the Council of the Community no more. 

If he has spoken In anger against one of the Priests inscribed In the 
Book, he shall do penance for one year and shaii be excluded for his 
soul's sake from the pure Meal of the Congregation. But if he has 
spoken unwittingly, he shall do penance for six months. 

Whoever has deliberately lied shall do penance for six months. 

Whoever has deliberately insulted his companion unjustly shall do 
penance for one year and shall be excluded. 

Whoever has deliberately deceived his companion by word or by 
deed shall do penance for six months. 

If he has failed to care for his companion, he shall do penance for 
three months. But if he has feiled to care for the property of the 
Community thereby causing its loss, he shall restore it in full. And if he 
be unable to restore it, he shall do penance for sixty days. 

Whoever has borne malice against his companion unjustly shall do 
penance for six months/one year; and likewise, whoever has taken 
revenge in any matter whatever. 

Whoever has spoken foolishly: three months. 

Whoever has interrupted his companion whilst speaking: ten days. 

Whoever has lain down to sleep during an Assembly of the 
Congregation : thirty days. And likewise, whoever has left, without 
reason, an Assembly of the Congregation as many as three times 
during one Assembly, shall do penance for ten days. But if he has 
departed whilst they were standing he shall do penance for thirty days. 

Whoever has gone naked before his companion, without having 
been obliged to do so, he shall do penance for six months. 

Whoever has spat in an Assembly of the Congregation stiall do 
penance for thirty days. 

Whoever has been so poorly dressed that when drawing his hand 
from beneath his garment his nakedness has been seen, he shall do 
penance for thirty days. 

Whoever has guffawed foolishly shall do penance for thirty days. 
Whoever has drawn out his left hand to gesticulate with it shall do 
penance for ten days. 

Whoever has gone about slandering his companion shail be 
excluded from the pure Meal of the Congregation for one year and 
shall do penance. But whoever has siandered the Congregation shall 
be expelled from among them and shall return no more. 

Whoever has murmured against the authority of the Community shall 
be expelled and shall not return. But if he has murmured against his 
companion unjustly, he shall do penance for six months. 

Should a man return whose spirit has so trembled before the 

authority of the Community that he has betrayed the tmth and walked in 
the stubbomness of his heart, he shaii do penance for two years. 
During the first year he shaii not touch the pure Meal of the 
Congregation, and during the second year he shall not touch the Drinl< 
of the Congregation and shaii sit beiow aii the men of the Community. 
Then when his two years are completed, the Congregation shaii 
consider his case, and if he Is admitted he shaii be inscribed In his 
ranl< and may then question concerning the Law. 

if, after being In the Council of the Community for ten fuii years, the 
spirit of any man has failed, so that he has betrayed the Community 
and departed from the Congregation to waii< In the stubbomness of his 
heart, he shall return no more to the Council of the Community. 
Moreover, if any member of the Community fias shared with him his 
food or property which ... of the Congregation, his sentence shall be 
the same; he shaii be ex[peiied]. 

VIII in the Councii of the Community there shaii be twelve men and 
three Priests, perfectly versed in all that is revealed of the Law, whose 
wori<s shaii be truth, righteousness, justice, ioving-i<indness and 
humility They shaii preserve the faith in the Land with steadfastness 
and meel<ness and shaii atone for sin by the practice of justice and by 
suffering the sorrows of affiiction. They shaii waii< with aii men 
according to the standard of truth and the rule of the time. 

When these are in Israel, the Councii of the Community shaii be 
established In truth, it shall be an Everlasting Plantation, a House of 
Holiness for Israel, an Assembly of Supreme Holiness for Aaron. They 
shaii be witnesses to the truth at the Judgement, and shaii be the elect 
of Goodwill who shaii atone for the Land and pay to the wicl<ed their 
reward, it shaii be that tried wall, that prec/otvs comer-stone, whose 
foundations shaii neither rocl< nor sway in their place (isa. xxviii, 16). it 
shaii be a Most Holy Dwelling for Aaron, with everlasting l<nowiedge of 
the Covenant of justice, and shaii offer up sweet fragrance. It shall be a 
House of Perfection and Truth In Israel that they may establish a 
Covenant according to the everlasting precepts. And they shall be an 
agreeable offering, atoning for the Land and determining the 
judgement of wickedness, and there shall be no more iniquity. When 

they have been confirmed for two years in perfection of way in the 
Foundation of ttie Community, they shall be set apart as holy within the 
Council of ttie men of ttie Community. And the Interpreter shall not 
conceal from them, out of fear of the spirit of apostasy any of those 
things hidden from Israel which have been discovered by him. 

And when these become members of the Community in Israel 
according to all these rules, tliey shall separate from tfie habitation of 
unjust men and shall go irrto the wilderness to prepare ttiere the way of 
Him; as it is written. Prepare in the widemess the way of ... , make 
straight in the desert a path for our God (Isa. xl, 3). This (path) is the 
study of the Law which He commanded by the hand of IVIoses, that they 
may do according to all that has been revealed from age to age, and 
as the Prophets have revealed by His Holy Spirit. 

And no man among the members of the Covenant of the Community 
who deliberately on any point whatever, turns aside from all that is 
commanded, shall touch the pure Meal of the men of holiness or know 
anything of their counsel until his deeds are purified from all injustice 
and he walks in perfection of way And then, according to the 
judgement of the Congregation, he shall be admitted to the Council 
and shall be inscribed in his rank. This rule shall apply to whoever 
enters the Community. 

And these are the rules which the men of perfect holiness shall 
follow in their commerce with one another 

Everyman who enters the Council of Holiness, (the Council of those) 
who walk in the way of perfection as commanded by God, and who 
deliberately or through negligence transgresses one word of the Law 
of Moses, on any point whatever, shall be expelled from the Council of 
the Community and shall return no more; no man of holiness shall be 
associated In his property or counsel In any matter at all. But if he has 
acted Inadvertently, he shall be excluded from the pure Meal and the 
Council and they shall Interpret the rule (as follows). For two years he 
shall take no part in judgement or ask for counsel; but if, during that 
time, his way becomes perfect, {tfien he shall return) (4Q258) to the 

(Court of) Inquiry and the Council, in accordance with the judgement of 
the Congregation, provided that he commit no further inadvertent sin 
during two fUll years. IX For one sin of inadvertence (alone) he shall do 
penance for two years. But as for him who has sinned deliberately, he 
shall never return; only the man wfK> has sinned inadvertently shall be 
tried for two years, that his way and counsel may be made perfect 
according to the judgement of the Congregation. And aflen/vards, he 
shall be inscribed in his rank in the Community of Holiness. 

When these become members of the Community in Israel according 
to all these rules, they shall establish the spirit of holiness according to 
everlasting truth. They shall atone for guilty rebellion and for sins of 
unfaithfulness, that they may obtain loving-kirKlness for the Land 
without the flesh of holocausts and the fat of sacrifice. Arxl prayer 
rightly offered shall be as an acceptable fragrance of righteousness, 
and perfection of way as a delectable free-will offering. At that time, the 
men of the Community shall set apart a House of Holiness in order that 
it may be united to the most holy things and a House of Community for 
Israel, for those who walk in perfection. The sons of Aaron alone shall 
command in matters of justice and property and every rule concerning 
the men of the Community shall be determined according to their word. 

As for the property of the men of holiness who walk in perfection, it 
shall not be merged with that of the men of Injustice who have not 
purified their life by separating themselves from iniquity and walking in 
the way of perfection. They shall depart from none of the counsels of 
the Law to walk in all the stubbornness of their hearts, but shall be ruled 
by the primitive precepts in which the men of the Community were first 
instructed until there stiall come the Proptiet and the Messiahs of 
Aaron and Israel. 

These are the precepts in which the Master shall walk in His 
commerce with ail the living, according to the rule proper to 
every season and according to the worth of every man 

He shall do the will of God according to all that tias been revealed 
from age to age. 

He shall measure out all knowledge discovered throughout the ages, 
together with the Precept of the age. 

He shall separate and weigh the sons of righteousness according to 
their spirit. 

He shall hold firmly to thie elect of the time according to His will, as 
He has commanded. 

He shall judge every man according to his spirit. He shall admit him 
in accordance with the cleanness of his harKis arKi advance him in 
accordance with his urxierstanding. And he shall love and hate 

He shall not rebul<e the men of the Pit nor dispute with them. 

He shall conceal the teaching of the Law from men of injustice, but 
shall impart true knowledge and righteous judgement to those who 
have chosen the Way. He shall guide them all in knowledge according 
to the spirit of each and according to the rule of the age, and shall thus 
instruct them in the mysteries of marvellous truth, so that in the midst of 
the men of the Community they may walk perfectly together in all that 
has been revealed to them. This is the time for the preparation of the 
way into the wilderness, and he shall teach them to do all that is 
required at that time and to separate from all those who have not 
turned aside from all injustice. 

These are the rules of conduct for the Master in those times with 
respect to His ioving and haling 

Everlasting hatred in a spirit of secrecy for the men of perdition! He 
shall leave to them wealth and earnings like a slave to his lord and like 
a poor man to his master. 

He shall be a man zealous for the Precept whose time is for the Day 
of Revenge. He shall perform the will of God In all his deeds, and in ail 
his dominion as He has commanded. He shall freely delight in all that 
befalls him and nothing shall please him save God's will. He shall 
delight in all the words of His mouth and shall desire nothing except 
His command. He shall watch always [for] the judgement of God, and 
shall bless his Maker [for all His goodness] and declare [His mercies] 

in all that befalls. 

He shall bless Him [with the offering] of the lips X at the times 
ondained by Him: at the beginning of the dominion of light, and at its 
end when it retires to its appointed place; at the beginning of the 
watches of darkness when He unlocks their storehouse and spreads 
them out, and also at their erxl when they retire before the light; when 
the heavenly lights shine out from the dwelling-place of Holiness, and 
also when they retire to the place of Glory; at the errtry of the (monthly) 
seasons on the days of the new moon, and also at their end when they 
succeed to one another. Their renewal is a great day for the Holy of 
Holies, and a sign for the unlocking of everlasting mercies at the 
beginning of seasons in all times to come. 

At the beginning of the months of the (yearly) seasons 

and on the holy days appointed for remembrance, 

in their seasons I will bless Him 

with the offering of the lips 

according to the Precept engraved for ever: 

at the beginning of the years 

and at the end of their seasons 

when their appointed law is fulfilled, 

on the day decreed by Him 

that they should pass from one to the other- 

the season of early harvest to the summer time, 

the season of sowing to the season of grass, 

the seasons of years to their weeks (of years )- 

and at the beginning of theirweeks 

for the season of Jubilee. 

All my life the engraved Precept shall be on my tongue 
as the fruit of praise 
and the portion of my lips. 

1 will sing with knowledge and all my music 

shall be for the glory of God. 

(My) lyre (and) my harp shall sound 

for His holy order 

and 1 will tune the pipe of my lips 

to His right measure. 

With the coming of day and night 

I wiil enter the Covenant of God, 

and when evening and morning depart 

I wiii recite His decrees. 

I wiii piace in them my bounds without return. 

i wiii deciare His judgement concerning my sins, 

and my transgressions shaii be before my eyes 

as an engraved Precept. 

i wiii say to God, 'iVIy Righteousness' 

and 'Author of my Goodness' to the iVIost High, 

'Fountain of Knowiedge' and 'Source of Hoiiness', 

'Summit of Giory' and 'Aimighty Eternai iVlajesty'. 

i wiii choose that which He teaches me 

and wiii deiight in His judgement of me. 

Before i move my hands and feet 
i wiii biess His Name, 
i wiii praise Him before i go out or enter, 
or sit or rise, 

and whiist i iie on the couch of my bed. 

i wiii biess Him with the offering 

of that which proceeds from my iips 

from the midst of the ranl<s of men, 

and before i iift my hands to eat 

of the pieasant fruits of the earth. 

i wiii biess Him for His exceeding wonderfui deeds 

at the beginning of fear and dread 

and in the abode of distress and desoiation. 

i wiii meditate on His power 

and wiii iean on His mercies aii day iong. 

i l<now that judgement of aii the iiving 

is in His hand, 

and that aii His deeds are truth. 

I wiii praise Him when distress is unieashed 

and will magnify Him also because of His salvation. 

I will pay to no man the reward of evil; 
I will pursue him with goodness. 
Forjudgementof allthe living Is with God 
and It Is He who will render to man his reward. 
I will not envy In a spirit of wickedness, 
my soul shall not desire the riches of violence. 
I will not grapple with the men of perdition 
until the Day of Revenge, 

but my wrath shall not turn from the men of falsehood 
and I will not rejoice until judgement Is made. 
I will bear no rancour 

against them that turn from transgression, 

but will have no pity 

on all who depart from the way. 

I will offer no comfort to the smitten 

until their way becomes perfect. 

I will not keep Belial within my heart, 

and In my mouth shall be heard 

no folly or sinful deceit, 

no cunning or lies shall be found on my Hps. 

The fruit of holiness shall be on my tongue 

and no abominations shall be found upon It. 

I will open my mouth 

In songs of thanksgiving, 

and my tongue shall always proclaim 

the goodness of God and the sin of men 

until their transgression ends. 

I will cause vanities 

to cease from my Hps, 

uncleanness and crookedness 

from the knowledge of my heart. 

I will Impart/conceal knowledge with discretion 

and will prudently hedge it within a firm bound 

to preserve faith and strong judgement 

in accordance with the justice of God. 

I will distribute the Precept 

by the measuring-cord of the times, 

and ... righteousness 

and loving-kindness towards the oppressed, 

encouragement to the troubled heart 

XI and discernment to the erring spirit, 

teaching understanding to them that murmur 

that they may answer meekly 

before the haughty of spirit 

and humbly before men of injustice 

who point the finger and speak of iniquity 

and who are zealous for wealth. 

As for me, 

my justification is with God. 

In His hand are the perfection of my way 

and the uprightness of my heart. 

He will wipe out my transgression 

through His righteousness. 

For my light has sprung 

from the source of His knowledge; 

my eyes have beheld His marvellous deeds, 

and the light of my heart, the mystery to come. 

He that is everlasting 

is the support of my right hand; 

the way of my steps is over stout rock 

which nothing shall shake; 

for the rock of my steps is the truth of God 

and His might is the support of my right hand. 

From the source of His righteousness 
is my justification. 

and from His marvellous mysteries 

Is the light In my heart. 

My eyes have gazed 

on that which Is eternal, 

on wisdom concealed from men, 

on knowledge and wise design 

(hidden) from the sons of men; 

on a fountain of righteousness 

and on a storehouse of power, 

on a spring of glory 

(hidden) from the assembly of flesh. 

God has given them to His chosen ones 

as an everlasting possession, 

and has caused them to Inherit 

the lot of the Holy Ones. 

He has joined their assembly 

to the Sons of Heaven 

to be a Council of the Community, 

a foundation of the Building of Holiness, 

and eternal Plantation throughout all ages to 

As for me, 

I belong to wicked mankind, 

to the company of unjust flesh. 

My Iniquities, rebellions, and sins, 

together with the perversity of my heart, 

belong to the company of worms 

and to those who walk In darkness. 

For mankind has no way, 

and man Is unable to establish his steps 

since justification Is with God 

and perfection of way Is out of His hand. 

All things come to pass by His knowledge; 

He establishes all things by His design 

and without Him nothing Is done. 

As for me, 

if I stumble, the mercies of God 
sliaii be my eternai saivation. 
If I stagger because of the sin of flesh, 
my justification shall be 

by the righteousness of God which endures for ever. 

When my distress is unleashed 

He will deliver my soul from the Pit 

and will direct my steps to the way. 

He will draw me near by His grace, 

and by His mercy will He bring my justification. 

He will judge me in the righteousness of His truth 

and in the greatness of His goodness 

He will pardon all my sins. 

Through His righteousness he will cleanse me 

of the uncleanness of man 

and of the sins of the children of men, 

that I may confess to God His righteousness, 

and His majesty to the Most High. 

Blessed art Thou, my God, 

who openest the heart of Thy servant to knowledge! 

Establish all his deeds in righteousness, 

and as it pleases Thee to do for the elect of mankind, 

grant that the son of Thy handmaid 

may stand before Thee for ever. 

For without Thee no way is perfect, 

and without Thy will nothing is done. 

It is Thou who hast taught all knowledge 

and all things come to pass by Thy will. 

There is none beside Thee to dispute Thy counsel 

or to understand all Thy holy design, 

or to contemplate the depth of Thy mysteries 

and the power of Thy might. 

Who can endure Thy glory, 

and what is the son of man 

in the midst of Thy wonderfui deeds? 

What shali one born of woman 

be accounted before Thee? 

Kneaded from the dust, 

his abode is the nourishment of worms. 

He is but a shape, but moulded clay, 

and inclines towards dust. 

What shall hand-moulded clay reply? 

What counsel shall it understand? 

Community Rule manuscripts from Cave 4 


This'is the best preserved of the ten 4QS manuscripts. Seven columns 
of the text have survived, five of them containing full-length lines. 
Column 1 , with a wide margin on tfie right, is almost certainly the 
beginning of the Scroll. It corresponds to 1QS v, 1 . The last Identifiable 
passage represents 1QS XI, 7. The word 'God' ['el) is written twice 
with palaeo-Hebrew letters (at 1QS IX, 25 and x, 9). Columns I and II of 
S'' (1 QS V, l-VI, 7) provide a shorter and smoother version of the Rule 
than 1QS. The more fragmentary 4QS'^ {=4Q256) supports the present 
version on the essential points. The most significant peculiarities of 
4QS'^ (=4Q258) are the almost complete absence of the 'full' spelling 
characteristic of the Qumran sectarian manuscripts, the different 
opening line and a repeated failure to mention 'the Priests, the Sons of 
Zadok'. For both its occurrences In 1QS, 4QS'^ (and 4QS'') read 'the 
Congregation' (ha-rabbim), an alternative reading likely to possess 
Important historical Implications. 

For the editio princeps, see P. S. Alexander and G. Vermes, DJD, 
XXVI, 83-128. See also G. Vermes, 'The Leadership of the Qumran 
Community: Sons of Zadok - Priests - Congregation', In the Martin 
Hengel Festschrift Geschichte-TradiHon-Reilexion, ed. P. Schafer 
(Tubingen, 1996), 375-84. 

I (=1QS v, 1-20) Teaching for the Master concerning the men of the Law 
(or: tfie Master who is tfie superior of ttie men of the Law) who have 
freely pledged themselves to convert from all evil and hold fast to all 
that He has commanded. And tfiey shall separate from the 
congregation of tfie men of injustice and sfiall unite with respect to 
doctrine and property, and they shall be under tfie authority of the 

Congregation concerning aii matters of doctrine and property. Ttiey 
shaii practise liumility and rigtrteousness and justice and lovlng- 
[kindness] and modesty in all their ways. And no man shall wall< in the 
stubbornness of his heart so as to stray. He is rather to lay [a 
foundation] of truth for Israel for the Community for all those who have 
freely pledged themselves to Holiness in Aaren and to a House of 
Truth in Israel and for those who jo[in th]em for a Community. Whoever 
enters the Council [of the Commu]nity shall undertake by binding (oath) 
to [return t]o the Law of Moses with all (his) heart and soul, to all that 
has been revealed from the L[aw]. 

[And whoever enters] the Council of the me[n] of the Communi[ty 
shaii separate from all the men] of injustice... He shall not touch the 
purity of the men [of hoiinejss and shall not eat with (them) [in 
community. And no] one of the men of the Community [shaii follow] their 
decision in any [doctrine] and judgement. And ... of work. No one from 
the men of holiness shaii eat ... [And] they shall not lean upon [work]s of 
vanity for they are aii vanity who [do not know His Covenant and aii 
who despisje His word He will blot them out from the world. Aii their 
deeds are defiieme[nt] be[fore Him and aiji [their property unclean.] ... 
Gentiies(?) and they pronounce oaths and execrations and vows. [But 
when a man enters the Covenant according to aii these precepts, that 
he may be joined to the hjoiy [Congregation,] they [shaii examine their 
spirit in community,] am[ong themselves] con[cerning their 
understanding] II (1QS v, 21-Vi, 7) and their practice of the Law under 
the authority of the sons of Aaron who have freely pledged themselves 
to restore His Covenant and heed to aii the precepts commanded by 
Him to be practised by the multitude of Israel who have freely pledged 
themselves to return in common. They shaii be inscribed in the order, 
one after another, each according to his understanding and his deeds 
in the Law, that aii may obey one another, the man of lesser rank the 
greater. And they shaii examine their spirit and their deeds in the Law 
yearly so that each man may be advanced in accordance with [his] 
un[derstanding] or moved down in accordance with his aberrations. 
They shall rebuke one another (in) loving-kindness. Let no man 
address his companion with anger or ill-temper or wicked envy. Also 
let no man accuse his companion before tfie Congregation without 

having rebuked him before \/vitnesses. These are the ways in which all 
of them shall wall<, each man with his companion, wtierever they dwell. 
[The man of lesser rank] shall ob[ey] the greater in matters of work and 
pro[perty. And they shall e]at [in common] and bless In common and 
dellbera[te] in common. [Arxl wherever there are ten] III (1 QS VI, 7-1 0) 
men of [the Council of the Community, there shall not lack] a pri[est 
from ajmong them. [And] they [shall sit, each m]an according to his 
rank, [before him arxJ sliall be asked their counsel in all things in that 
order] And when [the table has been prepared for eating or the n]ew 
wine [for drinking, the] priest shall [be first to stretch out his hand to 
bless the firstfruit of the bread] and of the wine. [And where the ten are, 
there shall never lack a man among them who shall study the Law day 
and night. And the Congregation shall w]atch [for one third of every 
night of the year, to read the Book] IV ... V (IS VII, 13) ... [and whoever 
draws] his hand from be[neath his garment] ...VI (1QS VIII, 6-21) ... 
[and] to pay to the wicked [their reward. It shaii be a tried waii, that 
precious corner-stone whose foundations shaii not rock nor sway from] 
their [pl]ace; (it shall be) a most holy dweiiing-piace [for Aaron, with the 
knowledge of them all of a covenant of justice and of the offering of 
fragrance; (it shall be) a house of perfection and truth for lsrae]l to 
establish a covenant according to the everlasting precepts. 

[They shall be an acceptance to atone for the land and to determine 
the judgement of wickedness with no injustice (any more). When these 
have been confirmed in the foujndation of the Community for two 
years, [in perfection of way they shall be separated as holy within the 
council of the men] of the Communi[ty And anything hidden from Isjrael 
but discovered by the man [who interprets, he shall not conceal it from 
them for fear of the spirit of apostasy.] And when these become (part 
of) the Community/in Israel, they shall separate fr[om the midst of the 
habitation] of the men [of injustice to go into the wilderness to prepare 
there the way of HIM (or: {the truth} (4Q259). This is the study of the 
La]w which He has commanded by the ha[nd of Moses, to prajctise all 
[that has been revealed from age to age, and as the prophets have 
revealed by His holy spirit. And no ma]n from the men of the covenant 
of the [Community who turns aside from any commandment 
deliberately stiall touch the purity of tiie men of holiness, nor shall he 

know any of their counsel until tils deeds are purified from all injustice 
so tliat lie wall<s in perfection of way. And tiiey siiaii admit iiim to tine 
council by tine decision of the Congregation and afterwards he shall be 
inscribed in his rank. And this rule (shaii apply) to everyone who 
attaches himself] to the Community. [And these are the rules which the 
men of tioliness shall follow, one regarding another] Everyone who 
[enters the council of the Community] ...VII (1QS VII, 24-iX, 10, 15) ... 
they shall exclude him from purity and from council and from judgement 
for tw[o year]s and he shaii retum to study and to council if he fias not 
committed again a sin by inadvertence for two fuii years. For one sin of 
inadvertence he shaii do penance for two years, and for a deliberately 
committed sin he shaii return no more. But he shaii be tried for two 
[yjears concerning the perfection of his way and for his counsel 
according to the decision of the Congregation and he shaii be 
inscribed in his rank in the Community of holiness. [When] these 
[become part] of the Community in Israel according to these rules, they 
shaii [es]tabiish the spirit of hoiiness as eternal truth. They shaii atone 
for guilty rebeiiion [and the sin of unfaithfui]ness and shaii gain (divine) 
acceptance for the ian[d without the flesh] of holocausts and the fat of 
sacrifices and offerings. And the cor[r]ect free-will gift of the lips shaii 
be like a fragrance [of righteousness and the perfection] of the way like 
the free-will offerin[g of ajgreeabie [tribute]. And at that time they shaii 
separate a house of Aaron for hoiiness for ail [ ] of God [and a house of 
Community for is]raei who walk in perfe[ction. Oniy the sons of Aajron 
[shaii comm]a[nd in matters of jujstice and property And the property 
[of the men of hoiiness who wajik in perfection, let [their property] not 
be mer[ged with] the property [of the men of falsehood] who have not 
confir[med their way to separate from aii] e[vii things] so as to waik in 
[the way of perfection. Let them not depart from any counsel of the 
Law] and they shaii be judged by the [primitive precepts in which the 
men of the Community began to be instructed. He shaii perform the 
judgement of every man according to his spirit and he shaii admit him 
according to the cleanness of his hands] VIII (1QS iX, 15-x, 3) and 
shaii advance him according to his understanding, and so shaii be his 
love and his hatred. Furthermore he shaii not rebuke a man and shaii 
not dispute with the men of the pit. IHe shall conceal his counsel among 

the men of injustice, but he shaii impart tnje knowledge and righteous 
judgement to those who have chosen the way, to each according to his 
spirit and according to the rule of the age, [guiding the]m with 
l<nowiedge. And thus shall he instruct them in the mysteries of marvei 
and truth among the men of the Community that they may walk in 
perfection each man with [his fellow in all that has been] revealed to 
them. This is the time for the preparation of the way into the 
wilderness. He shall instruct them in all that is to be done in that time. 

[And he shall separate] from every man who has not tumed away 
from all injustice. And these are the njles of conduct for the Master in 
[those] ti[mes] [with respect to his loving and] hating. Everlasting hatred 
for the men of the pit in a spirit of secrecy. He shall leave to them 
property and gain [and the earnings of toil like a slave to] his [lojrd and 
the poor man to his master. Each shall be zealous for the precept and 
his time shall become a day [of revenge.] He shall [perform the will (of 
God) in all his actions and in aljl his dominion a[s He has commanded. 
And a]ll that befalls him, he shall enjoy as a free gift and without the will 
[of GOD] [he shall not enjoy (anything). He shall delight in all the words 
of His mouth and shall desire nothing that He has] n[ot commanded. 
And] he shall watch al[ways for the judgemenjt of GOD [ ] and he shall 
bless his Maker and in all that befalls he shall declare [ ] and with the 
offering of the lips he shall bless Him at [the times which He has 
decreed. At the beginning of the dominion of light ajnd the c[ompletion 
of Its circuit when It retjires to [Its] appointed dwelling at the beginning 
[of the watches of darkness. When He opens its storehouse and 
spreads It out and at the completion of its circuit when it retires befjore 
the light. When [the heavenly lights] shine out [from the a]bode [of His 
holiness together with their withdrawal to the dwelling of glory. At the 
entry of seasons according to the new moon as well as their 
completion of their circuit when one succeeds to the other]; IX (1QS x, 
4-12) at their renewal there Is a great day for the Holy of Holies and a 
sign for the opening of the everlasting mercies at the beginning of the 
seasons for ail ages to come. At the beginning of the months for their 
seasons and on the holy days according to their rules for 
remembrance in [their] seasons, i will bless Him [with the offering of the 
ijips according to the precept [en]graved for ever. At the beginning of 

the years and at the cxsmpletion of the circ[uit of their seasons, when 
they ful]fil their determined precept on the day decreed for one to foilow 
another, the seas[on of early harvest the summer, and the season of 
so]wing the season of grass, the seasons of the ye[ar]s thei[r] weel<s 
[and at the beginning of] theirweel<s the seasons of jubilee. And during 
aii my existence the [en]graved precept shaii be on [my tongue as a 
fruit] of praise and a po[rtion] of my iips. I wiii sin[g] with l<nowledge and 
aii my music is for the giory of GOD. [And i wiii] stril<e my iyre to the 
order [of His lioliness and the pipe of my iips i will] tune to [His r]ight 
measure. [At the coming] of the day [and the n]ight I wiii errter the 
covenant [of GOD and at the departure of evening and moming I wiii 
recite His precepts. And in them wiii i re-establish [my boundaries 
without return, i will deciare His judgement correct concerning] my 
[transjgression [and] my [rebeljlion shaii be before my eyes [as an 
engraved precept. And I say to GOD, 'IVIy righteousness' and to the 
IVIost High, 'Ajuthor of my goodness', 'Fountain of Knowledge' and 
'Source of Holiness', 'Summit of Glory and 'Almighty Eternal Majesty'. 
I will choose] X (1QS x, 12-18) that which He teaches [me and I will 
delight in His judgement of me. Before I move my hands] and feet I will 
bless [His name and before I lift my hand to grow fat from] the pleasant 
pro[duce of the world. At the beginning of fear and dread and in the 
abode of distress] a[nd desolation, I will confess (His) marvel and I will 
meditate on His might and on His mercies] I will lea[n all day long. I 
know that in His hand is the judgement of all the living and all His 
deeds are truth.] When [distress] sta[rts I will praise Him and I will exalt 
Him for His salvation. And I will not pay] an [evil] reward [to a man; I will 
pursue him with goodness. For the judgement of all the living is with 
GOD, and He] will repay [man his reward ... ]XI ...XII (1QS XI, 7) ... 
[and He has caused] them [to inherjit the l[ot of the Holy Ones] ... XIII 
(1QS XI, 14-15) ... [He will ajtone [for all] my sins. [Through His 
righteousness He will cleanse me of the uncleanness of man and from 
the sins of the childjren of m[en that I may confess to God] His 
righ[teousness] ... 


Three fragmentary columns of a leather scroll contain damaged 
sections of 1 QS VII-IX. The text translated comes from columns II and III 
and represents an important doctrinal section of 1QS (VIII, 4-IX, II) in an 
abridged form. Not only are some of the interlinear additions to 1QS 
absent, suggesting their later editorial nature, but4QS® (4Q259) jumps 
from 1QS VIII, 15 to IX, 12, thus omitting among other things the 
mention of the 'Prophet and the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel' (1QS 
IX, II). It would seem that the copyist of this manuscript substituted 
4Q319 (the calendric document oi Otot) for the text corresponding to 
1QS X-XI. 

For the editio princeps, see P. S. Alexander and G. Vermes, DJD, 
XXVI, 129-52. 

II (1QS VII, 20-VIII, 10) ... And when [he has] completed] [two years, 
the Congregation shall consider his case arKi he shall be Inscribed in] 
his [ran]k and afterwards he may question [concerning the law. And 
anyone who has been In the Cojuncll of the Community until he has 
completed [ten years, and then his spirit turned back so that he has 
betrayed the Community and has departed from] the Congregation to 
walk [in the stubbornness of his heart, he shall return no more to the 
Council of the Community. And any of the m]en of the Community who 
[has shared with him his purity or his property], his sentence shall be 
[like his: he shall be expelled. In the Council of the Community there 
shall be twelve m]en [and] three priests, [perfect in all that has been 
revealed from the whole Law to practise] truth, righteousness and 
justice [loving-kindness and modesty towards one another. They shall 
preserve fjaith in the land with steadfastness and with humility [arxJ a 
brojken [spirit.] And they shall atone for in[iquity by the practice of 
justice and the distress of tejsting. They shall walk with all men[ by the 
standard] of truth, by the mle [of the time. When these are In] Israel, the 
Council of the Community shall be established [to be an] everlasting 
plantation, a House of Holiness for Israel and an Assembly] of 

Supreme Holiness for Aaron. They shall be witnesses of the truth at the 
Judgement, and shall be the elect of good [will who atone for] the Lan[d 
and pay] to the wicked their reward. It shall be the tried wall, [that 
precious] cor[ner-stone. They shall] ne[ither rock, no]r sway from their 
place (tea. xxviii, 16). It shall be a m[ost] Holy Dwelling for Aar[on f]or a 
Covenan[t of justice to offer up sweet] fragrance. It shall be a House of 
Perfection and Truth in [Israel that they may establish a Covenant 
according to the e\/erlast]ing [precepts.] When they have been 
confirmed III (IQS VIII, 11-15; IX, 12 ...) [for two years in the perfection 
of way in the Foundation of the Community they shall be set apart] as 
holy within the Council of the men [of the Community And] the 
interpreter shall not con[c]eal [from them, out of fear of the spirit of 
apostasy any of those things hidden from Israel which have been 
discover]ed by him. [And when] these shall become the Community 
they shall separate fro[m the habitation [of unjust men and shall] go 
into the wil[derness to prepare there thje way of the Truth; a[s] it is 
written, [In the wldemes]s prfepare the my of... (?), make strai\ght in 
the desert a path for our God (Isa. xl, 3). This (path) is [the study of the 
Law which] He commanded by the hand of Moses. (The manuscript 
omits the section corresponding to IQS VIII, 15b to ix, 11, and 
continues with ix, 12 on the same line.) These are the pre[cepts in 
which] the Mas[ter shall walk] in his commerce with all the living, 
according to the rule proper to every season and according to the 
wort[h of every man]. 

Entry into the Covenant 


Previously called 4QTohorot B^, this tiny fragment represents a 
document describing the entry into the Covenant, known from the 
Community Rule (1QS), and alludes to a festival in the third month, i.e. 
the Feast of Weeks of Pentecost, when according to one of the Cave 
4 manuscripts of the Damascus Document (40266) the Qumran 
Covenant renewal took place. 

For the editio princeps, see P. S. Alexander and G. Vermes, DJD, 
XXVI, 200—16. 

[And the Guardian will come] and the elders with him until... and they 
shall enter by genealogy... And the Guardian shall [curse (the 
unrepentant), saying 'Be damned without] mercy. [Let him be cur]sed 
And he will remove him] from his inheritance for ev[er] ... wlien he 
visits destruction ... 

Four Classes of the Community 


Formerly known as 4QTohorot D^, this fragment is one of three small 
scraps which have partly preserved the division of the Community into 
four lots or classes, already known from CD XIV, 5-6, viz. Priests, 
Levites, Israelites and Proselytes. 

For the editio princeps, see P. S. Alexander and G. Vermes, DJD, 
XXVI, 217-23. 

... [The first] lot belongs [to the Pries]ts, the sons of Aaron [and the 
second lot to the Levites ranked in order] each according to his spirit. 
And the [third] lo[t will belong to the children of Israel in order each 
according to his spirit. And] the fourth lot will belong to the Prosely[tes] 

The Damascus Document 

(CD, 4Q265-73, 5Q12, 6Q15) 

Extensive fragments of the Dannascus Document have been 
recovered from three of the Qumran caves (4Q265-73, 5Q12=CD IX, 
7-10, 6Q15=CD IV, 19-21, V, 13-14, v, l-VI, 2, VI, 20-VII, I plus a text 
unparalleled in CD), but two incomplete medieval copies of this 
document had been found already many years earlier, in 1896-7, 
amongst a mass of discarded manuscripts in a storeroom (genizah) of 
an old Cairo synagogue. Published in 1910 by S. Schechter 
(Fragments of a Zadokite Work, Cambridge), they were reprinted with 
a new Prolegomenon by J. A. Fitzmyer in 1970, re-edited by Chaim 
Rabin under the title The Zadokite Documents (Oxford, 1954) and in 
the light of the 4Q fragments by M. Broshi, The Damascus Document 
Reconsidered, Jerusalem, 1992. Cf also J. M. Baumgarten et al. in J. 
H. Charlesworth et al., eds., The DSS ll:Damascus Document.., 
1 995, 4-79. For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XVIII, 

Dating from the tenth and twelfth centuries respectively the 
manuscripts found in Cairo - Manuscript A and Manuscript B - raise a 
certain number of textual problems in that they present two different 
versions of the original composition. I have settled the difficulty as 
satisfactorily as I can by following Manuscript A, to which the 4Q 
fragments correspond, and by inserting the Manuscript B variants in 
brackets or footnotes. At a certain point, as the reader will see. 
Manuscript A comes to an end and we then have to rely entirely on 
Manuscript B. Furthermore, two of the Cave 4 manuscripts (4Q266 
and 268) show that page 1 of the Cairo document was preceded by 
another section of which both the beginning and the end have survived. 
Also 4Q266 and 270 indicate that in antiquity the text corresponding to 
CD IX, 1 was preceded by CD XVI. In the translation i have therefore 

rearranged the order of the pages and placed pages xv and XVI 
before page ix. 

The title 'Damascus Document' derives from the references in the 
Exhortation to the 'New Covenant' made 'in the larxJ of Damascus'. 
The significance of this phrase is discussed in Chapter III together with 
the chronological data included in the manuscript. They suggest that 
the document was written in about 100 BCE and this hypothesis is 
indirectly supported by the absence of any mention in the historical 
passages of the Kittim (Romans) whose invasion of the Orient did not 
take place until after 70 BCE. 

The work is divided into an Exhortation and a list of Statutes. In the 
Exhortation, the preacher - probably a Guardian of the Community - 
addresses his 'sons' on the themes of the sect's teaching, many of 
which appear also in the Community Rule. His aim is to encourage the 
sectaries to remain faithful, and with this end in view he sets out to 
demonstrate from the history of Israel and the Community that fidelity is 
always rewarded and apostasy chastised. 

During the course of his argument, the author of the Damascus 
Document frequently interprets biblical passages in a most 
unexpected way I have mentioned one of these commentaries on the 
marriage laws in Chapter IV (pp. 69-70), but there is another intricate 
exposition of Amos v, 26-7 on p. 135 which may not be easy to 

In the Bible these verses convey a divine threat: the Israelites were 
to take themseives and their idols into exile: 'You shall take up Sakkuth 
your king and Kaiwan your star-god, your images which you made for 
yourselves, for I will take you into exile beyond Damascus.' But the 
Damascus Document transforms this threat into a promise of 
salvation; by changing certain words in the biblical text and omitting 
others its version reads: 'I will exile the tabernacle of your king and the 
bases of your statues from my tent to Damascus.' 

In this new text, the three key phrases are interpreted symbolically as 
follows: 'tabernacle' = 'Books of the Law'; 'king' = 'congregation'; 
'bases of statues' = 'Books of the Prophets'. Thus: 'The Books of the 
Law are the tabernacle of the king; as God said, / wll raise up the 
tabernacle of David viJiich is fallen (Amos ix, 11). The king is the 

congregation; and the bases of the statues are the Books of the 
Prophets whose sayings Israel despised.' 

The omission of any reference to the 'star-god' is made good by 
introducing a very different 'Star', the messianic 'Interpreter of the Law' 
with his companion the 'Prince of the congregation'. 'The star is the 
Interpreter of the Law who shall come to Damascus; as it is written, A 
star shall come forth out of Jacob and a sceptre shall rise out of 
Israel (Num. xxiv, 17). The sceptre is the Prince of the whole 

The second part of the Damascus Document, the Statutes, consists 
of a collection of laws which mostly reflect a sectarian reinterpretation 
of the biblical commandments relative to vows and oaths, tribunals, 
purification, the Sabbath and the distinction between ritual purity and 
impurity They are followed by rules concerned with the institutions and 
organization of the Community. Some of the particular laws of the 
Damascus Rule appear also in the Temple Scroll (cf p. 192). 

Whereas the Exhortation represents a literary genre adopted by 
both Jewish and Christian religious teachers (e.g. the Letter to the 
Hebrews), the methodical grouping of the Statutes prefigures that of 
the Mishnah, the oldest extant Jewish code. 

The Statutes as they appear in the Qumran fragments include the 
form of the ritual for the Feast of the Renewal of the Covenant, so it 
may be assumed that the entire Damascus Document was originally 
connected with that festival. 4Q266, as will be seen presently 
specifies that it occurred in the third month, i.e. that it coincided with 
the Feast of Weeks, celebrated on the fifteenth day of the third month 
according to the sect's calendar. 

The translation of those Cave 4 fragments which are additional to 
CD will follow the presentation of the Cairo manuscripts. 

The Exhortation 

I Listen nowll all you who know righteousness, and consider the works 
of God; for He has a dispute with all flesh and will condemn all those 

who despise Him. 

For when they were unfaithful and forsool< Him, He hid His face from 
Israel and His Sanctuary and delivered them up to the sword. But 
remembering the Covenant of the forefathers, He left a remnant to 
Israel and did not deliver it up to be destroyed. And in the age of wrath, 
three hundred and ninety years after He had given them into the hand 
of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, He visited them, and He caused 
a plant root to spring from Israel and Aaron to inherit His Land and to 
prosper on the good things of His earth. And they perceived their 
iniquity and recognized that they were guilty men, yet for twenty years 
they were like blind men groping for the way. 

And God observed their deeds, that they sought Him with a whole 
heart, and He raised for them a Teacher of Righteousness to guide 
them in the way of His heart. And he made known to the latter 
generations that which God had done to the latter generation, the 
congregation of traitors, to those who departed from the way This was 
the time of which it is written. Like a stubborn heifer tlius was Israel 
stubborn (Hos. iv. 16), when the Scoffer arose who shed over Israel 
the waters of lies. He caused them to wander in a pathless wilderness, 
laying low the everlasting heights, abolishing the ways of 
righteousness and removing the boundary with which the forefathers 
had marked out their inheritance, that he might call down on them the 
curses of His Covenant and deliver them up to the avenging sword of 
the Covenant. For they sought smooth things and preferred illusions 
(Isa. XXX, 10) and they watched for breaks (Isa. xxx, 13) and chose the 
fair neck; and they justified the wicked and condemned the just, and 
they transgressed the Covenant and violated the Precept. They 
banded together against the life of the righteous (Ps. xciv, 21) and 
loathed all who walked in perfection; they pursued them with the sword 
and exulted in the strife of the people. And the anger of God was 
kindled against II their congregation so that He ravaged all their 
multitude; and their deeds were defilement before Him. 

Hear now, all you who enter the Covenant, and I will unstop your ears 
concerning the ways of the wicked.Z^ 

God loves knowledge. Wisdom and understanding He has set 
before Him, and prudence and knowledge serve Him. Patience and 

much forgiveness are with Him towards those who turn from 
transgression; but power, might, and great flaming wrath by the hand of 
all the Angels of Destruction towards those who depart from the way 
and abhor the Precept. They shall have no remnant or survivor. For 
from the beginning God chose them not; He knew their deeds before 
ever they were created and He hated their generations, and He hid His 
face from the Land until they were consumed. For He knew the years 
of their coming and the length and exact duration of their times for all 
ages to come and throughout eternity He knew the happenings of their 
times throughout all the everlasting years. And in all of them He raised 
for Himself men called by nameZ^ that a remnant might be left to the 
Land, and that the face of the earth might be filled with their seed. And 
He made known His Holy Spirit to them by the hand of His anointed 
ones, and He proclaimed the truth (to them). But those whom He hated 
He led astray. 

Hear now, my sons, and I will uncover your eyes that you may see 
and understand the works of God, that you may choose that which 
pleases Him and reject that which He hates, that you may walk 
perfectly in all His ways and not follow after thoughts of the guilty 
inclination and after eyes of lust. For through them, great men have 
gone astray and mighty heroes have stumbled from former times till 
now. Because they walked in the stubbornness of their heart the 
Heavenly Watchers fell; they were caught because they did not keep 
the commandments of God. And their sons also fell who were tall as 
cedar trees and whose bodies were like mountains. All flesh on dry 
land perished; they were as though they had never been because they 
did their own will and did not keep the commandment of their Maker so 
that His wrath was kindled against them. Ill Through it, the children of 
Noah went astray together with their kin, and were cut off. Abraham 
did not walk in it, and he was accounted a friend of God because he 
kept the commandments of God and did not choose his own will. And 
he handed them down to Isaac and Jacob, who kept them, and were 
recorded as friends of God and party to the Covenant for ever The 
children of Jacob strayed through them and were punished in 
accordance with their error And their sons in Egypt walked in the 
stubbornness of their hearts, conspiring against the commandments of 

God and each of them doing that which seemed right in his own eyes. 
They ate blood, and l-le cut off their males in the wildemess. And at 
Kadesh He said to them, Go up and possess the land (Deut. ix, 23). 
But they chose their own will and did not heed the voice of their Maker, 
the commands of their Teacher, but murmured in their tents; and the 
anger of God was l<indled against their congregation. Through it their 
sons perished, and through it their kings were cut off; through it their 
mighty heroes perished and through it their land was ravaged. Through 
it the first members of the Covenant sinned arKi were delivered up to 
the sword, because they forsook the Covenant of God and chose their 
own will and walked in the stubbomness of their hearts, each of them 
doing his own will. 

But with the remnant which held fast to the commandments of God 
He made His Covenant with Israel for ever, revealing to them the 
hidden things in which all Israel had gone astray. He unfolded before 
them His holy Sabbaths and his glorious feasts, the testimonies of His 
righteousness and the ways of His truth, and the desires of His will 
which a man must do in order to live. And they dug a well rich in water; 
and he who despises it shall not live. Yet they wallowed In the sin of 
man and in ways of uncleanness, and they said. This is our (way).' But 
God, in His wonderful mysteries, forgave them their sin and pardoned 
their wickedness; and He built them a sure house in Israel whose like 
has never existed from former times till now. Those who hold fast to it 
are destined to live for ever and all the glory of Adam shall be theirs. 
As God ordained for them by the hand of the Prophet Ezeklel, saying. 
The Priests, the Levites, and the sons IV of Zadok v\ho kept the 
charge of my sanctuary vtien the children of Israel strayed from me, 
they shall offer me fat and blood (Ezek. xliv, 1 5). 

The Priests are the converts of Israel who departed from the land of 
Judah, and (the Levites are) those who joined them. The sons of 
Zadok are the elect of Israel, the men called by name who shall stand 
at the end of days. Behold the exact list of their names according to 
their generations, and the time when they lived, and the number of their 
trials, and the years of their sojourn, and the exact list of their deeds... 

(They were the first men) of holiness whom God forgave, and who 
justified the righteous and condemned the wicked. And until the age is 

completed, according to the number of those years, all who enter after 
them shall do according to that Interpretation of the Law In which the 
first (men) were instructed. According to the Covenant which God 
made with the forefathers, forgiving their sins, so shall He forgive their 
sins also. But when the age Is completed, according to the number of 
those years, there shall be no more joining the house of Judah, but 
each man shall stand on his watch-tower: The mil is built, the 
boundary far removed {M\c. vll, II). 

During all those years Belial shall be unleashed against Israel, as IHe 
spoke by the hand of Isaiah, son of Amoz, saying, Terror and the pit 
and the snare are upon you, O inhabitant of the land (tea. xxiv, 17). 
Interpreted, these are the three nets of Belial with which Levi son of 
Jacob said that he catches Israel by setting them up as three kinds of 
righteousness. The first Is fornication, the second Is riches, and the 
third Is profanation of the Temple. Whoever escapes the first Is caught 
In the second, and whoever saves himself from the second Is caught In 
the third (Isa. xxlv, 18). 

The 'builders of the wall' (Ezek. xili, 10) who have followed after 
'Precept' - 'Precept' was a spouter of whom It is written, They shall 
surely spout (M\c. II, 6) - shall be caught In fornication twice by taking a 
second wife while the first Is alive, whereas the principle of creation Is, 
Male and female created He them (Gen. I, 27)' V Also, those who 
entered the Ark went in two by two. And concerning the prince it Is 
written, He shall not multiply wves to himself {DeiA. xvll, 17); but 
David had not read the sealed book of the Law which was In the ark 
(of the Covenant), for It was not opened In Israel from the death of 
Eleazar and Joshua, and the elders who worshipped Ashtoreth. It was 
hidden and (was not) revealed until the coming of Zadok. And the 
deeds of David rose up, except for the murder of Uriah, and God left 
them to him. 

Moreover, they profane the Temple because they do not observe the 
distinction (between clean and unclean) In accordance with the Law, 
but He with a woman who sees her bloody discharge. 

And each man marries the daughter of his brother or sister, whereas 
Moses said , You shall not approach your mother's sister; she Is your 
mothers near kin (Lev. xviii, 13). But although the laws against Incest 

are written for men, they also apply to women. When, therefore, a 
brother's daughter uncovers the nakedness of her father's brother, she 
Is (also his) near kin. 

Furthermore, they defile their holy spirit and open their mouth with a 
blaspheming tongue against the laws of the Covenant of God saying, 
'They are not sure.' They speak abominations concerning them; they 
are all kindlers of fire and lighters of brands (Isa. 1, 11), their \/\ebs 
are spiders'mbs and their eggs are vipers' eggs (Isa. lix, 5). No man 
that approaches them shall be free from guilt; the more he does so, the 
guiltier shall he be, unless he is pressed. For (already) in ancient times 
God visited their deeds and His anger was kindled against their 
works; foritis a people of no discernment {\sa. xxvii, II), it is a nation 
void of counsel inasmuch as there is no discernment in them (Deut. 
xxxii, 28). For in ancient times, Moses and Aaron arose by the hand of 
the Prince of Lights and Belial in his cunning raised up Jannes and his 
brother when Israel was first delivered.!^ 

And at the time of the desolation of the land there arose removers of 
the bound who led Israel astray And the land was ravaged because 
they preached rebellion against the commandments of God given by 
the hand of Moses and VI of His holy anointed ones, and because they 
prophesied lies to turn Israel away from following God. But God 
remembered the Covenant with the forefathers, and he raised from 
Aaron men of discernment and from Israel men of wisdom, and He 
caused them to hear And they dug the Well:Z? the well vJhich the 
princes dug, vtiich the nobles of the people delved vith the stave 
(Num. xxi, 18). 

The Well is the Law, and those who dug it were the converts of Israel 
who went out of the land of Judah to sojourn in the land of Damascus. 
God called them all princes because they sought Him, and their 
renown was disputed by no man. The Stave is the Interpreter of the 
Law of whom Isaiah said. He makes a tool for His mrk (Isa. liv, 16); 
and the nobles of the people are those who come to dig the Well with 
the staves with which the Stave ordained that they should walk in all the 
age of wickedness - and without them they shall find nothing - until he 
comes who shall teach righteousness at the end of days. 

None of those brought into the Covenant shall enter the Temple to 

light His altar in vain. They shali bar the door, forasmuch as God said, 
Who among you wll bar its door? And , You shall not light my altar in 
vain {Ma\. i, 10). They shall take care to act according to ttie exact 
interpretation of the Law during the age of wickedness. They shall 
separate from the sons of the Pit, and shall keep away from the 
unclean riches of wickedness acquired by vow or anathema or from 
the Temple freasure; they shall not rob the poor of His people, to make 
of widows their prey and of the fetheriess their victim (Isa. x, 2). They 
shall distinguish between clean and unclean, and shall proclaim the 
difference between holy and profane. They shall keep the Sabbath day 
according to its exact interpretation, and the feasts and the Day of 
Fasting according to the firxJing of the members of the New Covenant 
in the land of Damascus. They shall set aside the holy things according 
to the exact teaching conceming them. They shall love each man his 
brother as himself; they shall succour the poor, the needy, and the 

A man shall seek his brother's well-being VII and shall not sin 
against his near kin. They shall keep from fornication according to the 
statute. They shall rebuke each man his brother according to the 
commandment and shall bear no rancour from one day to the next. 
They shall keep apart from every uncleanness according to the 
statutes relating to each one, and no man shall defile his holy spirit 
since God has set them apart. For all who walk in these (precepts) in 
perfect holiness, according to all the teaching of God, the Covenant of 
God shall be an assurance that they shall live for thousands of 
generations (MS. B: as it is written. Keeping the Covenant and grace 
wth those m/70 love me and keep my commandments, to a thousand 
generations, Deut. vii, 9). 

And if they live in camps according to the rule of the Land (MS. B: as 
it was from ancient times), marrying (MS. B: according to the custom 
of the Law) and begetting children, they shall walk according to the 
Law and according to the statute concerning binding vows, according 
to the rule of the Law which says, Bet\/\een a man and his wfe and 
between a father and his son (Num. xxx, 17). And all those who 
despise (MS. B: the commandments and the statutes) shall be 
rewarded with the retribution of the wicked when God shall visit the 

Land, when the saying shall come to pass which is written_ among the 
words of the Prophet Isaiah son of Amoz: He viill bring upon you, and 
upon your people, and upon your father's house, days such as have 
not come since the day that Ephraim departed from Judah (Isa. vii, 
17). When the two houses of Israel were divided, Ephraim departed 
from Judah. And all the apostates were given up to the sword, but 
those who held fast escaped to the land of the north; as God said, / wii 
exiie the tabernacle of your king and the bases of your statues from 
my tent to Damascus (Amos v, 26-7) 

The Books of the Law are the tabernacle of the king; as God said, / 
wll raise up the tabemacle of David vJiich is fallen (Amos ix, II). The 
king is the congregation; and the bases of the statues are the Books 
of the Prophets whose sayings Israel despised. The star is the 
Interpreter of the Law who shall come to Damascus; as it is written, A 
star shall come forth out of Jacob and a sceptre shall hse out of Israel 
(Num. xxiv, 17). The sceptre is the Prince of the whole congregation, 
and when he comes he shall smite all the children ofSeth (Num. xxiv, 

At the time of the former Visitation they were saved, whereas the 
apostates VIII were given up to the sword; and so shall it be for all the 
members of His Covenant who do not hold steadfastly to these (MS. B: 
to the curse of the precepts). They shall be visited for destruction by 
the hand of Belial. That shall be the day when God will visit. (MS. B: As 
He said,) The princes of Judah have become (MS. B: like those v\ho 
remove the bound); wath shall be poured upon them (Hos. v, 10). 
For they shall hope for healing but He will crush them. They are all of 
them rebels, for they?^ have not turned from the way of traitors but have 
wallowed in the ways of whoredom and wicked wealth. They have 
taken revenge and borne malice, every man against his brother, and 
every man has hated his fellow, and every man has sinned against his 
near kin, and has approached for unchastity, and has acted arrogantly 
for the sake of riches and gain. And every man has done that which 
seemed right in his eyes and has chosen the stubbornness of his 
heart. They have not kept apart from the people (MS. B: and their sin) 
and have wilfully rebelled by walking in the ways of the wicked of whom 
God said. Their vine is the venom of serpents, the cruel poison (or 

head) of asps (Deut. xxxii, 33). 

The serpents are the kings of the peoples and their w/ne is their 
ways. And the head of asps is the chief of the kings of Greece who 
came to wreak vengeance upon them. But all these things the builders 
of the mil and those who daub it wth plaster {Ezek. xiii, 10) have not 
understood because a follower of the wind, one who raised storms and 
rained down lies, had preached to them (Mic. ii, 11), against all of 
whose assembly the anger of God was kindled. 

And as for that which Moses said. You enter to possess these 
nations not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your 
hearts (Deut. ix, 5) but because God loved your fathers and kept the 
oath (Deut. vii, 8), thus shall it be with the converts of Israel who depart 
from the way of the people. Because God loved the first (men) who^ 
testified in His favour, so will He love those who come after them, for 
the Covenant of the fathers is theirs. But He hated the builders of the 
v\bII and His anger was kindled (MS. B: against them and against all 
those who followed them); and so shall it be for all who reject the 
commandments of God and abandon them for the stubbornness of 
their hearts. This is the word which Jeremiah spoke to Baruch son of 
Neriah, and which Elisha spoke to his servant Gehazi. 

None of the men who enter the New Covenant in the land of 
Damascus, (B I) and who again betray it and depart from the fountain 
of living waters, shall be reckoned with the Council of the people or 
inscribed in its Book from the day of the gathering in (B II) of the 
Teacher of the Community until the coming of the Messiah out of Aaron 
and Israel. 

And thus shall it be for every man who enters the congregation of 
men of perfect holiness but faints in performing the duties of the 
upright. He is a man who has melted in the furnace (Ezek. xxii, 22); 
when his deeds are revealed he shall be expelled from the 
congregation as though his lot had never fallen among the disciples of 
God. The men of knowledge shall rebuke him in accordance with his 
sin against the time when he shall stand again before the Assembly of 
the men of perfect holiness. But when his deeds are revealed, 
according to the interpretation of the Law in which the men of perfect 
holiness walk, let no man defer to him with regard to money or work. 

for all the Holy Ones of the Most High have cursed him. 

And thus shall It be for all among the first and the last who reject (the 
precepts), who set Idols upon their hearts and walk In the 
stubbornness of their hearts; they shall have no share in the house of 
the Law. They shall be judged In the same manner as their 
companions were judged wtx) deserted to the Scoffer. For they have 
spoi<en wrongly against the precepts of righteousness, and have 
despised the Covenant and the Pact - the New Covenant - which they 
made in the land of Damascus. Neither they nor their kin shall have any 
part in the house of the Law. 

From the day of the gathering in of the Teacher of the Community 
until the end of ail the men of war who deserted to the Liar there shall 
pass about forty years (Deut. 11, 14). And during that age the wrath of 
God shall be kindled against Israel; as He said. There shall be no 
king, no prince, no judge, no man to rebuke wth justice (Hos. Ill, 4). 
But those who turn from the sin of Jacob, who keep the Covenant of 
God, shall then speak each man to his fellow, to justify each man his 
brother, that their step may take the way of God. And God will heed 
their words and will hear, and a Book of Reminder shall be written 
before Him of them that fear God and worship His Name, against the 
time when salvation and righteousness shall be revealed to them that 
fear God. And then shall you distinguish once more between the just 
and the wcked, between one that serves God and one that serves 
Him not (Mai. iii, 1 8); and He wll showloving-kindness to thousands, 
to them that love Him and mtch for Him, for a thousand generations 
(Exod. XX, 6). 

And every member of the House of Separation who went out of the 
Holy City and leaned on God at the time when Israel sinned and defiled 
the Temple, but returned again to the way of the people in small 
matters, shall be judged according to his spirit in the Council of 
Holiness. But when the glory of God is made manifest to Israel, all 
those members of the Covenant who have breached the bound of the 
Law shall be cut off from the midst of the camp, and with them all those 
who condemned Judah in the days of its trials. 

But all those who hold fast to these precepts, going and coming in 
accordance with ttie Law, who heed ttie voice of the Teactier and 

confess before God, (saying), 'Truly we have sinned, we and our 
fatfiers, by wall<ing counter to the precepts of the Covenant, Thy 
judgements upon us are justice and truth'; who do not lift their hand 
against His holy precepts or His righteous statutes or His true 
testimonies; who have learned from the former judgements by which 
the members of the Community were judged; who have listened to the 
voice of the Teacher of Righteousness and have not despised the 
precepts of righteousness when they heard them; they shall rejoice and 
their hearts shall be strong, and they shall prevail over all the sons of 
the earth. God will forgive them and they shall see His salvation 
because they took refuge in His holy Name.^ 

The Statutes 

... (He shall not) XV swear by (the Name), nor byAleph and Lamed 
(Elohim), nor byAleph and Daleth (Adonai), but a binding oath by the 
curses of the Covenant. 

He shall not mention the Law of Moses for., were he to swear and 
then break (his oath) he would profane the Name. 

But if he has sworn an oath by the curses of the Covenant before the 
judges and has transgressed it, then he is guilty and shall confess and 
make restitution; but he shall not be burdened with a capital sin. 

And all those who have entered the Covenant, granted to all Israel 
for ever, shall make their children who have reached the age of 
enrolment, swear with the oath of the Covenant. And thus shall it be 
during all the age of wickedness for every man who repents of his 
corrupted way On the day that he speaks to the Guardian of the 
congregation, they shall enrol him with the oath of the Covenant which 
Moses made with Israel, the Covenant to return to the Law of Moses 
with a whole heart and soul, to whatever is found should be done at 
that time. No man shall make known the statutes to him until he has 
stood before the Guardian, lest when examining him the Guardian be 
deceived by him. But if he transgresses after swearing to return to the 
Law of Moses with a whole heart and soul, they (the members) shall be 

innocent should he transgress. And should he err In any matter that is 
revealed of the Law to the multitude of the camp, the Guardian shall 
{instruct} (4Q266, fr. 8 1, 5) him and shall issue directions concerning 
him: he should stu[dy] for a full year.^ And according to his (the 
Guardian's) knowledge, {no madman, or lunatic shall enter, no 
simpleton, or fool, no blind man, or maimed, or lame, or deaf man, and 
no minor, none of these shall enter into the Community, for the Angels 
of Holiness are [in their midst]} (4Q266, fr. 8 1, 6-9). 

(For God made) XVI a Covenant with you and all Israel; therefore a 
man shall bind himself by oath to return to the Law of Moses, for in it all 
things are strictly defined. 

As for the exact determination of their times to which Israel turns a 
blind eye, behold it is strictly defined in the Book of the Divisions of 
ttie Times into tlieir Jubilees and Weel<s. And on the day that a man 
swears to return to the Law of Moses, the Angel of Persecution shall 
cease to follow him provided that he fulfils his word: for this reason 
Abraham circumcised himself on the day that he knew. 

And concerning the saying. You sliall keep your vowby fulfilling it 
(Deut. xxiii, 24), let no man, even at the price of death, annul any 
binding oath by which he has sworn to keep a commandment of the 

But even at the price of death, a man shall fulfil no vow by which he 
has sworn to depart from the Law. 

Concerning the oath of a woman 

Inasmuch as He said. It Is for her husband to cancel her oath (Num. 
XXX, 9), no husband shall cancel an oath without knowing whether it 
should be kept or not. Should it be such as to lead to transgression of 
the Covenant, he shall cancel it and shall not let it be kept. The rule for 
her father is likewise. 

Concerning the statute for free-wiii offerings 

No man shall vow to the altar anything unlawfully acquired. Also, no 
Priest shall tal<e from Israel anything unlawfully acquired. And no man 
shall consecrate the food of his house to God, for it is as he said. Each 
hunts his brother wth a net (or votive-offering: Mic. vii, 2). Let no man 
consecrate... And if he has consecrated to God some of his own field 
... he who has made the vow shall be punished ... {[with] one sixth of his 
valuation money} (4Q266, fr. 8 ii, 2-3) ... 

IX!1 Every vow by which a man vows another to destruction (cf. Lev 
xxvii, 29) by the laws of the Gentiles shall himself be put to death. And 
concerning the saying. You shall not tal<e vengeance on the children 
of your people, nor bear any rancour against them (Lev. xix, 18), if 
any member of the Covenant accuses his companion without first 
rebuking him before^ witnesses; if he denounces him in the heat of 
his anger or reports him to his elders to make him look contemptible, 
he is one that takes vengeance and bears rancour, although it is 
expressly written. He takes vengeance upon His adversaries and 
bears rancour against His enemies (Nah. 1,2). If he holds his peace 
towards him from one day to another55 and thereafter speaks of him in 
the heat of his anger, he testifies against himself concerning a capital 
matter because he has not fulfilled the commandment of God which 
tells him: You shall rebuke your companion and not be burdened wth 
sin because of him (Lev. xix, 17). 

Concerning the oath with reference to that which He said. You 
shall not take the law into your own hands (I Sam. XXV, 26) 

Whoever causes another to swear in the field instead of before the 
Judges, or at their decree, takes the law into his own hands. When 
anything is lost, and it is not known who has stolen it from the property 
of the camp in which it was stolen, its owner shall pronounce a curse, 
and any man who, on hearing (it), knows but does not tell, shall himself 
be guilty. 

When anything is returned which is without an owner, whoever 

returns it shall confess to the Priest, and apart from the ram of the sin- 
offering, it shaii be his. 

And iil<ewise, everything which is found but has no owner shall go to 
the Priests, for the finder is ignorant of the rule concerning it. If no 
owners are discovered they shall l<eep it. 

Every sin which a man commits against the Law, and which his 
companion witnesses, he being alone, if it is a capital matter he shaii 
report it to the Guardian, rebul<ing him in his presence, and the 
Guardian shall record it against him in case he should commit it again 
before one man arxJ he should report it to the Guardian once more. 
Should he repeat it and be caught in the act before one man, his case 
shall be complete. 

And if there are two (witnesses), each testifying to a different matter, 
the man shall be excluded from the pure Meal provided that they are 
trustworthy and that each informs the Guardian on the day that they 
witnessed (the offence). In matters of property, they shall accept two 
trustworthy witnesses and shall exclude (the culprit) from the pure IVIeal 
on the word of one witness alone. No X Judge shall pass sentence of 
death on the testimony of a witness who has not yet attained ttie age of 
enrolment and who is not God-fearing. 

No man who has wilfully transgressed any commandment shall be 
declared a trustworthy witness against his companion until he is 
purified and able to return. 

And this is tfie Rule forttie Judges of the Congregation 

Ten shall be elected from the congregation for a definite time, four 
from the tribe of Levi and Aaron, and six from Israel. (They shall be) 
learned in the Bool< of Meditation and In the constitutions of the 
Covenant, and aged between twenty-five and sixty years. No man over 
the age of sixty shall hold office as Judge of the Congregation, for 
'because man sinned his days have been shortened, and In the heat of 
His anger against the inhabitants of the earth God ordained that their 
understanding should depart even before their days are completed' 
(Jubilees, xxiii, II). 

Concerning purification by water 

No man shall bathe in dirty water or in an amount too shallow to 
cover a man. He shall not purify himself with water contained in a£^ 
vessel. And as for the water of every rock-pool too shallow to cover a 
man, if an unclean man touches it he renders its water as unclean as 
water contained in a vessel. 

Concerning the Sabbath to observe it according to its law 

No man shall work on the sixth day from the moment when the sun's 
orb is distant by Its own fulness from the gate (wherein It sinks); for this 
is what He said, Observe the Sabbath day to keep it holy (Deut. v, 
12). No man shall speak any vain or idle word on the Sabbath day He 
shall make no loan to his companion. He shall make no decision in 
matters of money and gain. He shall say nothing about work or labour 
to be done on the morrow. 

No man shall walk in the field^ to do business on the Sabbath. He 
shall not walk more than one thousand cubits beyond his town. 

No man shall eat on the Sabbath day except that which is already 
prepared. He shall eat nothing lying in the fields. He shall not drink 
except in the camp. XI If he is on a journey and goes down to bathe, he 
shall drink where he stands, but he shall not draw water into a vessel. 
He shall send out no stranger on his business on the Sabbath day. No 
man shall wear soiled garments, or garments brought to the store, 
unless they have been washed with water or rubbed with incense. No 
man shall willingly mingle (with others) on the Sabbath. 

No man shall walk more than two thousand cubits after a beast to 
pasture it outside his town. He shall not raise his hand to strike it with 
his fist. If it is stubborn he shall not take it out of his house. 

No man shall take anything out of the house or bring anything In. And 
if he is In a booth, let him neither take anything out nor bring anything 
in. He shall not open a sealed vessel on the Sabbath. 

No man shall carry perfumes on himself whilst going and coming on 
the Sabbath. He shall lift neither stone nor dust in his dwelling. 

No man minding a child shall carry it whilst going and coming on the 

No man shall chide^ his manservant or maidservant or labourer on 
the Sabbath.^ No man shall assist a beast to give birth on the 
Sabbath day And if it should fall into a cistern or pit, he shall not lift it 
out on the Sabbath. 

No man shall spend the Sabbath in a place near to Gentiles on the 

No man shall profane the Sabbath for the sake of riches or gain on 
the Sabbath day But should any man fall into water or (fire), let him not 
be pulled out with the aid of a ladder or rope or (some such) utensil. 

No man on the Sabbath shall offer anything on the altar except the 
Sabbath burnt-offering; for it is written thus: Except your Sabbath 
offerings (Lev. xxiii, 38). 

No man shall send to the altar any burnt-offering, or cereal offering, 
or incense, or wood, by the hand of one smitten with any uncleanness, 
permitting him thus to defile the altar For it is written. The sacrifice of 
the i/i/c/ced is an abomination, but the prayer of the just is as an 
agreeable offering (Prov. xv, 8). 

No man entering the house of worship shall come unclean and in 
need of washing. And at the sounding of the trumpets for assembly he 
shall go there before or after (the meeting), and shall not cause the 
whole service to stop, XII for it is a holy service. 

No man shall lie with a woman in the city of the Sanctuary, to defile 
the city of the Sanctuary with their uncleanness. 

Every man who preaches apostasy under the dominion of the spirits 
of Belial shall be judged according to the law relating to those 
possessed by a ghost or familiar spirit (Lev. xx, 27). But no man who 
strays so as to profane the Sabbath and the feasts shall be put to 
death; it shall fall to men to keep him in custody. And if he is healed of 
his error, they shall keep him in custody for seven years and he shall 
afterwards approach the Assembly. 

No man shall stretch out his hand to shed the blood of a Gentile for 
the sake of riches and gain. Nor shall he carry off anything of theirs. 

lest they blaspheme, unless so advised by the company of Israel. 

No man shall sell clean beasts or birds to the Gentiles lest they offer 
them in sacrifice. He shall refuse, with all his power, to sell them 
anything from his granary or wine-press, and he shall not sell them his 
manservant or maidservant inasmuch as they have been brought by 
him into the Covenant of Abraham. 

No man shall defile himself by eating any live creature or creeping 
thing, from the larvae of bees to all creatures which creep in water. 
They shall eat no fish unless split alive and their blood poured out. And 
as for locusts, according to their various kinds they shall plunge them 
alive into fire or water, for this is what their nature requires. 

All wood and stones arKi dust defiled by the impurity of a man shall 
be reckoned like men having defilement of oil on them; whoever 
touches them shall be defiled bytheir defilement. And every nail or peg 
in the wall of a house in which a dead man lies shall become unclean 
as any working tool becomes unclean (Lev. xi, 32). 

The Rule for the assembly of the towns of Israel shall be according to 
these precepts that they may distinguish between unclean and clean, 
and discriminate between the holy and the profane. 

And these are the precepts in which the IVIaster shall walk in his 
commerce with all the living in accordance with the statute proper to 
every age. And in accordance with this statute shall the seed of Israel 
walk and they shall not be cursed. 

This is tiie Ruie Ibrthe assembiy oftiie camps 

Those who follow these statutes in the age of wickedness until the 
coming of the IVIessiah of Aaron XIII and Israel shall form groups of at 
least ten men, by Thousands, Hundreds, Fifties, and Tens (Exod. 
xviii, 25)-And where the ten are, there shall never be lacking a Priest 
learned in the Book of IVIeditation; they shall all be ruled by him. 

But should he not be experienced in these matters, whereas one of 
the Levites is experienced in them, then it shall be determined that all 
the members of the camp stiall go and come according to ttie latter's 

But should there be a case of applying the law of leprosy to a man, 
then the Priest shall come arxJ shall stand in the camp and the 
Guardian shall instruct him in the exact interpretation of the Law. 

Even if the Priest is a simpleton, it is he who shall lock up (the leper); 
for theirs is the judgement. 

This is the Ruie for f/ie Guardian of the camp 

He shall instruct the Congregation in the works of God. He shall 
cause them to consider His mighty deeds and shall recount all the 
happenings of etemity to them [according to] their [exjplanation 
(4Q267, fr. 9 iv, 2). He shall love ttiem as a father loves his children, 
and shall carry them in all their distress like a shepherd his sheep. He 
shall loosen all the fetters which bind them that in his Congregation 
there may be none that are oppressed or broken. He shall examine 
every man entering his Congregation with regard to his deeds, 
understanding, strength, ability and possessions, and shaii inscribe 
him in his place according to his rank in the lot of L[ight]. 

No member of the camp shaii have authority to admit a man to the 
Congregation against the decision of the Guardian of the camp. 

No member of the Covenant of God shall give or receive anything 
from the sons of Dawn (shahar) [or. of the Pit (shahat)] except for 

No man shall form any association for buying and seiiing without 
informing the Guardian of the camp and shall act on (his) advice and 
they shall not go {astray. Likewise he who marri[es]} (4Q266, fr 9 ii, 4) 
a woma[n] ... advice. Likewise he who divorces (his wife). And he (the 
Guardian) shall instruct {their sons [and their daughters in a spirijt) 
(4Q266, fr 9 ii, 6-7) of humility and in loving-kindness and shall not 
keep {anger} (4Q266, fr. 9 ii, 8) towards them ... 

This is the Ruie for the assembly of the camps during all [the age of 
wickedness, and whoever does not hold fast to] these (statutes) shall 
not be fit to dweii in the Land [when the Messiah of Aaron and Israel 
shall come at the end of days]. 

[And] ttiese are the [precepts] in which ttie Master [shall walk in his 

commerce with all the living until God shall visit the earth. As He said, 
There shall come upon you, and upon your people, and upon your 
father's house, days] XIV such as have not come since Ephraim 
departed from Judah (Isa. vii, 17); but for whoever shall walk in these 
(precepts), the Covenant of God shall stand firm to save him from all 
the snares of the Pit, whereas the foolish shall be punished.^ 

The Rule for the assembly of all the camps 

They shall all be enrolled by name: first the Priests, second the 
Levites, third the Israelites, and fourth the proselytes. And they shall be 
inscribed by name, one after the other: the Priests first, the Levites 
second, the Israelites third, and the proselytes fourth. And thus shall 
they sit and thus be questioned on all matters. And the Priest who is 
appointed {to head} (4Q267, fr 9 v, II) the Congregation shall be from 
thirty to sixty years old, learned in the Book of Meditation and in all the 
judgements of the Law so as to pronounce them correctly. 

The Guardian of all the camps shall be from thirty to fifty years old, 
one who has mastered all the secrets of men and the languages of all 
their clans. Whoever enters the Congregation shall do so according to 
his word, each in his rank. And whoever has anything to say^ with 
regard to any suit or judgement, let him say it to the Guardian. 

This is the Rule for the Congregation by which it shall provide 
for all its needs 

They shall place the earnings of at least two days out of every month 
into the hands of the Guardian and the Judges, and from it they shall 
give to the fatherless, and from it they shall succour the poor and the 
needy the aged sick and the man who is stricken (with disease), the 
captive taken by a foreign people, the virgin with no near kin, and the 
ma[id for] whom no man cares ... 

And this is the exact statement of the assembly ... 

This is the exact statement of the statutes in which [they shall 
walk until the coming of the Messia]hof Aaron and Israel who 
will pardon their iniquity 

[Whoever] deliberately lies in a matter of property... and shall do 
penance for six days ... 

[Whoever slanders his companion or bears rancour] unjustly [shall 
do penance for one] year... 

Damascus Document manuscripts from Cave 4 

Three Qumran caves have provided supplementary documentation to 
the text preserved in the Cairo Genizah. Of these the evidence 
furnished by Caves 5 (CD IX, 7-10) and 6 (CD IV, 19-21, v, 13-14, v, 
18-VI, 2, VI, 20-VII, 1) is negligible, but the fragments discovered in 
Cave 4 (4Q266-273) are of the highest importance. Furthermore 
4Q265 provides a kind of hybrid connecting the Damascus Document 
and the Community Rule. Palaeographically 4Q266-73 are dated from 
the mid-first century BCE to the beginning of the first century CE. 

The 4Q material represents (1) a prologue missing from CD 
(4Q266, fr. I— b; fr 2 i, 1-6, combined with 4Q267, fr 1 and 268, fr. 1) 
and substantial legal sections which follow the broken ending of the 
Statutes of CD. These laws relate to (2) the admission or dismissal of 
candidates (4Q266, fr. 5); to (3) criteria for disqualifying priests 
(4Q266, fr. 5; 267, fr. 5 ii; 273, frs. 2, 4 i); to (4) detailed rulings 
concerning tlie diagnosis and quarantining of persons suffering from 
skin disease (4Q266, fr. 6; 272, fr. 1); to (5) laws pertaining to 
gleanings (4Q266, fr. 6 iii-iv) and to the agricultural priestly dues 
(4Q270, fr. 3 ii-iii; 271, fr. 2; 269, fr. 8 i-ii). (6) A penal code partly 
overlapping with 1QS VII follows (4Q266, fr. 10; 270, fr. 7 i; 269, fr. II 1- 
ii). The two main manuscripts (4Q266, fr. II and 270, fr. 7i-ii) end with 
the ritual for the dismissal of unworthy members used in tfie ceremony 
marking entry into and expulsion from tfie Covenant. This festival was 
celebrated in the third month and coincided with the Feast of Weeks or 
Pentecost. Finally (7) the hybrid S-D (4Q265), in which the Community 
Rule and tlie Damascus Document merge, allows a glimpse into the 
interrelationship between tlie two main constitutional documents of the 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XVIII. For 
4Q269, see H. Stegemann, DJD, XXXVI, 201 -1 1 . 



Three Cave 4 manuscripts of the Damascus Document (4Q266, fr. 1a- 
b; fr. 2 i, 1-6, combined 4Q267 fr. 1 and 268 fr. 1) have preserved 
parts of a prologue unattested in the Cairo version. The prologue 
contains a title vaguely reminiscent of the opening of 4QS''. The 
context is eschatological and alludes to a revelation by God to those 
'who search His commandments and walk in the perfection of way. 
CD 11,1 follows on directly from the end of the prologue. 

4Q266, fr. la-b 

[For the Master to instruct the s]ons of Light to keep away from the 
way[s of wickedness] ... until the completion of the appointed time for 
the visitation of [the spirit of injustice] ... God [will destro]y all her 
deeds, bringing destruction on ... the removers of boundaries and He 
will inflict destruction [on the assembly] of wickedness. [And now listen] 
to me and I will let you know the awesome des[lgns of God] arKi His 
marvellous [mighty deeds]. I will recount to you [all that is concealed] 
from man [all the d]ays of his life... 


I flesh and creature... until it comes to them for they shall not be either 
early or late from their appointed times... He decreed an age of wrath 
for the people who did not know Him, and He established appointed 
times of goodwill for those who search His commandments and walk 
in the perfection of way. ArxJ He revealed hidden things to their eyes, 
and opened their ears so that they might hear deep (secrets) and 

understand all future things before they befall them. Listen rK>w, all you 
who know righteousness... (=CD 1,1). 


(4Q266, fr. 5) 

This fragment contains echoes of the Community Rule's regulations 
regarding admission and dismissal of candidates and CD's 
identification of the sons of Zadok as the 'converts of Israel'. 

I [that they may bring near] each according to [his] spirit [and 

deeds] ... they shall depart by the decision of the Guandian (cf. 1QS VI, 
1 6-1 7) ... [And these are the precepts] in which all ttie converts of Israel 
[shall wa]lk ... the sons of Zadok, the Priests (cf. CD IV, 2-3), behold 
the[y are tine converts of Israel... [the interpretation of the] last Law. And 
these are the precepts for the Mas[ter] in which [he shall walk (1 QS IX, 
12)] In regard to all Israel, for [God] shall not save any of those who are 
not established] in His ways to walk perfec[tly] ... 


4Q 266, fr. 5 ii (4Q267, fr. 5 ii; 273, frs. 2, 4 i) 

In this section of priestly legislation, the Community specifies (I) that 
only priests able to speak clearly and distinctly were allowed to read 
the Bible In public; (2) that priests who had been war prisoners were 
disqualified from Temple service; and (3) that priests wtio migrated to 
Gentile countries were deprived of their leading position and forbidden 

to partake in holy things. 

II Whoever speal<s too fast (or: too quietiy, lit. swift or light with his 
tongue) or with a staccato voice and does not split his words to make 
[his voice] heard, no one from among these shall read the Book of [the] 
La[w] that he may not misguide someone in a capital matter... [Any 
man] from among the sons of Aaron who has been taken prisoner by 
the nations... to defile him with their uncleanness. He shall not come 
close to the [holy] worship... Let him not eat the most holy [things] ... 
Any son of Aaron who retreats to ser[ve the nations] ... to teach his 
people the constitution of the people and also to betray.. [Any son] of 
Aaron whose name has been rejected from the Truth... [who has 
walked] in the stubbornness of his heart, eating from the holy ... from 
Israel, the Council of the sons of Aaron... who eats, he shall become 
guilty of the blood... in genealogy. And this is the rule for the dwelling 
[of the towns of Israel ... for the men] of holin[ess in] their [camps and] 
in their towns ina[ll] ... 


(40 266,269,272,273) 

The rules relating to the diagnosis of a skin disease affecting the scalp 
and the face (Lev xiil, 29-37) are missing from the Cairo manuscripts, 
but can be partially reconstructed from 4Q272 and 266 and also from 
4Q269 and 273. The Introductory formula prefixed to Lev. xlll, 33, viz., 
'And as for that which is said', usually Indicative of a repeat citation, 
suggests that a longer Leviticus quotation preceded it The skin 
disease section is followed by laws relating to various sexual 
discharges causing uncleanness and impurity linked with childbirth. 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XVIII, 50-51, 

4Q 266, fr. 6 i (4Q272 1 273 ii, 269 7) 

I ... a discoloration or a scab or a briglit spot ... And tine scab resulting 
from a blow by wood [or stjone or whatever blow, when the spi[rit] 
enters [and sei]zes the artery, and the blood recedes up and down, 
and the artery... after the blood ... 

[And the priest shall observe the skin, the living and] the dead. If the 
dead (sl<in) [exceeds] the living (skin), he shall lock him up [until the 
blood re]turns to the artery until the flesh grows. And the priest shall 
observe him and shall make a comparison [on] the seventh [d]ay, [and 
if the spirlit of life is moving up and down, and the flesh grows, [the 
plague is healed, clean is] the scab. The priest shall not observe the 
skin on the flesh. 

4Q266, fr. 6 

I But if the discoloration or the scab is lower [than the skin... and the 
Pr]iest sees it as the appearance of living flesh, it is [a 'leprosy" (skin 
disease)] which has seized the living skin. And a similar rule 
concerning ... the Priest shall see on the seventh day. If some living 
flesh has become dead, the leprosy is malignant. And the law for the 
scab of the head or the bea[rd, when the Priest shall see] that the spirit 
has entered the head and the beard seizing the artery, and [the plague] 
spreads from under the hair and turns Its appearance to fine yellow; for 
it is like a plant which has a worm under it and bites its root and makes 
its flower wittier And as for that which is said, And the Priest shall 
order thatUiey shave his head, but shall not shave the scab (Lev. xi 1 1 , 
33). This is in order that ttie Priest may count the dead and live hair. 
And he will see whether anything has been added from tlie live to the 
dead (hair) during the seven days. If there has, he is unclean. But if 
nothing has been added from the live (hair) to tlie dead, and the artery 
is filled with bl[ood] and tlie sp[i]rit of life goes up and down in it, this 
plague [is cured]. And this is tlie mie of the law of 'leprosy" for the sons 
of Aaron to set apart... 

And the law concerning a man with a flux. Any man with a [fl]ux 
issuing from [his] flesh, [o]r one that causes a Pew]d thought to arise or 
... II the woma[n] ... [the man who ap]proaches [her] will have [the s]in of 
menstrual uncleanness on him. And if she sees (blood) a[gain] and this 
is not [during the uncleanness] of seven days, she shall not eat sacred 
(food) and shall not en[ter] the Sanctuary until the sun has set on the 
eighth day. vacat 

And a woman vho [conceiv\es and bears a male child [shall be 
unclean] for seven [days like] in her menstrual d^ays. On the eighth 
day the flesh of his] foreskin [shall be circumcised. She shall 
continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying. But if she 
bears a female child, she shall be unclean for a fortnight as in] her 
[menstr[uation. For [sixty-six days she shall continue in her blood of 
purifying (Lev. xii, 2-5). And she] shall not eat [sacred (food) and shall 
not enter the Sanctuary, for] it is a capital crime... [Let her give the 
chi]ld to a wet-nurse who is in [(the state of) pur]\ty.... [And] if she 
cannot afford a lamb, then she shall take a turtledove or a young 
pigeon (Lev. xii, 8) and she shall substitute it for the [lamb].... 


(4Q 266,269,270,271) 

III ... [Concer]ning [gleanings (of grain) and the gleanings (of grapes) 
from the vine]yard. (A cluster is up to ten berries.) 

And all the gleanings (of grain) up to a seah (measure of capacity=c. 
12 litres) per toef sea/? (area requiring one seah of seed for sowing) ... 
[And a field] which produces no seed, is not subject to (a levy of) 
terumah-offering or of fallen grapes or of clusters up to ten berries. 
And for the harvest of olives and the fruit of its produce, if it is 
complete, isolated olives are one in thirty. 

But if the field was ravaged or consumed by burning, 


should the amount (remaining) be a sea/7 per bet seah, it is to be 
tithed. If one person gleans one seah from it one day, the terumah will 
be one isaron (=30 per cent of a seah). [Concerning the two] loaves of 
the terumah. All the families (lit. houses) of Israel, those who eat the 
bread of the land, are to offer the terumah once a year (cf. Num. xv, 
19-20; Lev. xxiii, 17). One (loaf) shall be one isaron. 


IV ... All sacred offerings from the planting of vineyards and all fruit 
trees (producing) food shall belong to them (the priests), as is decreed 
for them, in the holy [lan]d and in the land of (their) sojourn. And 
afterwards they may sell of them to bu[y] ... a man may plant, in the 
fourth year he may n[ot ea]t (of it) for they sanctified it in [that] y[ear] ... 

4Q 271 , fr. 2 (4Q269, fr. 8 Hi; 270, fr. 3 iii) 

... he shall take off from (the grain of) the threshing-floor one tenth of a 
ho[mer (measure of volume, c. 220 litres), that is one eph]ah [or bath 
(22 litres), as is established]. The ephah and the bath are both the 
same measure. And from [the wheat o]ne sixth of [an ephah out of a 
homer and one tenth of a bath] for the fruit of trees. Let no one 
separate himself (from the norm of I out of 200, cf. Ezek. xlv, 15) by 
offering one lamb out of a hundred. Let [no] man eat [from the 
threshing-floor] and from the garden before [the prie]sts have stretched 
out their hand [to blejss first.... a house belonging to a man, he may sell 
and with... and he shall be innocent.... Let no man bring... to his pure 
food. Neither shall he bring close to his pure food any gold or silver or 
[copper], or tin or le[ad] from which the nations have made idols, 
except new (metal) coming straight from the furnace. Let no man bring 
any leather or garment or any vessel [which is used for] work and which 

has been defiled by the corpse of a man unless they were sprinkled 
according to the law [of purity with the water] for uncleanness In the 
age of wickedness (by) a man pure of all urKileanness who has 
allowed the sun to set (i.e. one who after bathing himself did not 
proceed until after sunset). No young man who has not yet reached the 
age to pass the mu[ster shall sprinkle] ... 


(4Q 266,270) 

CD XIV ends with scrappy relics of a penal code. The Cave 4 
manuscripu and include a list of breaches of the rule punished 
by exclusion and penance of varying lengths. They closely resemble 
the code contained in the Community Rule (1QS VII). The principal 
difference consists in the explicit mention of women (fornication with 
one's wife and murmuring against the IVIothers) which once again 
renders the silence of Serefch concerning any matter pertaining to the 
female sex particularly eloquent. The penal code is followed by a 
Covenant ritual, which ends the Cave 4 version of the Damascus 
Document and contains the words spoken by the priestly head of the 
sect, following the expulsion of the unfaithful members of the 
congregation. The passage includes the reference to the 'third month' 
as the date of this festive assembly and presents the message of this 
writing as 'the last interpretation of the Law'. 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DVD, XVIII, 72-8, 

4Q266, fr. 10 (4Q270, fr. 7 i; 269, fr. 11 i-ii) 

... II [He shall be excluded for] two [hundred] days and do penance 

for one hundred days. But if it was a capital matter and he bears (a 
grudge), [he] shall not return [again. And whoev]er has in[sulted] his 
companion without a reason [shall be exc]luded for one year and do 
pe[nan]ce for s[ix months] (cf. 1QS VII, 4). Whoever has spoken a 
foolish word, shall do penance for t[wen]ty [days and will be excluded] 
for three month[s (cf. 1QS VII, 9). And whoever in]terrupts the w[ords of 
his companion and lets himself go, will do penance for ten] days (1QS 
VII, 9-10). [And whoever lies do]wn [and] falls asleep at [the mee]t[ing 
of the Congregation ... shall be excluded] for thirty days [and] do 
penance for ten days. [And likewise, whoever has] left [without the 
consent of the Congregation and gratu]itously as many as three ti[mes 
in] one [session], he [shall do penance for ten] days. But if he has left 
the session [when they were standing, he shall do penance for thir]ty 
day[s]. And whoever has walked [naked] before [his] companion, 
whether he has walked in the house or in the field, he has walked 
n[aked before the peo]ple; he shall be excluded for six [months] ... 
(1QS VII, 10-12). And whoever has [d]rawn his hand from under [his] 
gar[ment and he was so poorly dressed that his nakedness was seen, 
he shall be separated for thir]ty [day]s and shall do penance for ten 
(1QS VII, 13-14). And whoever has gu[ffawed foolishly making his 
voi]c[e heard, shall be excluded for th]irty (days) and shall do penance 
for fif[teen days. And whoever has drawn out] his le[ft hjand [to 
gesticu]late with it, shall do penance [for ten days (1QS VII, 14-15). 
And who]ever has gone [slandering his com]panion, they shall exclude 
him from the purity for one year. 


I [and shall do penance for six months. But whoever has slandered the 
Congregation shall be expelled] and shall not return ag[ain] (1QS VII, 
15-16). [If he has murmured against his companion unjustly, he shall do 
penance for six months (1QS VII, 17-18). And] the m[a]n whose spirit 
has so trembled [before the authority of the Community that he has 
betrayed the truth and walked in the stubbornness of his heart, he shall 
be excluded for two years] and do penance for sixty [days] (1QS VII, 

18-19). [When his two years are completed, the Congregation shall 
consider [his ca]se, [and if he is admitted,] he shall be ins[cribed in his 
rank and may then question about the law (1QS VII, 20 — 21). And 
whoever] has despised the law of the Congregation shall leave and 
[shall not return again. And whoever has taken] his food (from another 
person) outside the rules, he shall retum it to the man fr[om whom] he 
has taken it. vacat And wtx>ever has approached his wife, not 
according to the rules, (thus) fornicating, he shall leave and will not 
return again. [If he has murmured] against the Fathers, he shall leave 
and shall not retum [again (cf. 1QS Vil, 17). But if he has murmured] 
against the iVIothers, he shall do penance for ten days. For the Mothers 
have no fW)'m/7(distinction ?) within [the Congregation, vacat 

And these are the r]uies in [which they shall walk, all those who have 
been corrected. Whoev]er comes [to report some]one to the Priest 


II the Congregation, he shall willingly accept His judgement, as He has 
ordered by the hand of iVIoses regarding the soul that sins by 
inadvertence that he shall bring his sIn-offerIng and his guilt-offering. 
And concerning Israel It is written, / wll go to the ends [of] heaven and 
will not smell the smell of your sweef odour (Lev. xxvi, 31). And in 
another passage it Is written, To retum to God wth crying and fasting 
(Joel II, 13). And In another passage It is written. Rend your heart and 
not your garment (ibid.) and It is written to return to God wth fasting 
and v\eeping (Joel ii, 12). And whoever rejects these rules which follow 
ail the precepts found in the Law of iVIoses, shall not be counted with ail 
the sons of His truth, for his soul has detested the righteous corrections 
(cf 1QS ill, i). As a rebel, he shall be dismissed from the 
Congregation. The Priest [overjseeing the Congregation shall speak 
about him. Answering, [he shall] say: 'Blessed art Thou, "Lord" of the 
universe. Everything is In Thine hands and Thou art the maker of 
everything. Thou hast founded the [pejoples according to their families 
and the languages of their nations. Thou hast made them err in 

confusion without a way. And Thou hast chosen our Fathers and hast 
given to their seed the precepts of Thy truth and Thine holy judgements 
by which a man, if he practises them, shaii live. And Thou hast 
established boundaries for us and cursed those who transgress them. 
And we are the people of Thy redemption and the flock of Thy pasture. 
Thou hast cursed those who transgress It (the boundary?) but we 
maintain (It).' And the dismissed man stiall leave, and whoever eats 
from what Is his, and greets (literally. Inquires about the welfare - 
Shalom- of) the man who tias been dismissed, and agrees with him, 
his case shall be reconded by the Guardian according to the decree, 
and his judgement shall be complete. And all [the Inhabitants] of the 
camps shall assemble In the third month and shall curse him who turns 
aside, to the right [or to the left from the] Law. And this (the foregoing) 
is the Interpretation of the laws which they shall observe in all the age 
[of visitation which will be visited on ttiem during aiji the age of wrath 
and in their marches for ail those who dwell in their camps and ail their 
towns. Behold ail this is according to the last interpretation of the Law. 



Twelve fragments of a manuscript, dating probably to the end of the 
first century BCE, have preserved remains of a writing dependent both 
on the Community Rule and on the Damascus Document but also 
including material which Is In neither of these sources. Fr. I deals with 
the Initiation into the Community and the penal code In terms recalling 
1QS VI-VII, and fr. 7, lines 7-10 contains a description of the Council of 
the Community which Is an abridged version of 1QS VIII, 1 — 9. It is 
worth noting that the 'twelve men and three priests' of 1QS Viii, I is 
replaced here by'fift[een men]'. Elements of the Sabbath laws from CD 
Xi figure on columns i-ii of fr 7, while on one point the borrowing is 

probably from the Temple Scroll Lll, 17-18. As for material alien to 
1 QS and CD, fr. 2 cites Isaiah llv, 1 -2 In full and tfie last four lines of fr. 
7 ii reproduce Lev. xli, 2, 4a, 5, 4b, but omitting xii, 3. This quotation is 
part of an account of the ages of the world arranged according to 
weel<s, beginning with the garden of Eden. 
For the editio phnceps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XXXV, 57-58. 


... as it is written [in the Book of| ... [as] It Is written In the B[ook] of 
Isaiah the prophet: [Sing, o barren one, who did not bear; breal( forth 
in singing and] cry aloud you vho have not been in travail! For the 
sons [of the desolate one] vill be more [tiian the children of her vho 
is manied, says the Lord] Enlar\ge] the place of [your] ten[t] ... (tea. 
iiv, 1-2) its interpretation concerns... 


... Why does a ma[n] betray his brother ... [Let no] young man or 
woman eat [the sacrifice] of Passover... 


I ... [and he shaii be punished for t]en d[a]ys ... [and he shaii be 
punished] thirty days ... [and he shaii be punished during that time with 
the half of his food for fifte[en days] ... and he shall be punished for 
three months wi[th half of his food. The man who speal<s before] his 
fellow inscribed before him, shall be excluded from purity for six 
months [and he shall be punished with half of his food.] i/acaf And the 
man who lnsu[lts his fellow... shall be punished] for thirty days, vacat 
And the man who know[ingly] deceives [shall be separated for six] 
months (IQS VII, 3-4) and shall be punished during that time with half of 
his food. [And the man who lies] knowingly in any matter shall be 

punished for thirty days vacat [And the man who lies concerning 
property] l<now[ingiy], they shall exclude him for six months. [And the 
man who lies down] II ... [and falls asle]ep during a session of the 
Congregation shall be punished for thirt[y days. And if... to read from] 
the book, he falls asleep up to three times and if [he goes out, he shall 
be punished for ten days.] And the man who comes to j[oi]n the Council 
of the [Commu]nity [the Guardian of] the Congregation [shall examine 
him]. If it falls to him he shall instruct him for [one] year. [And after he 
shall stand] before the Congregation and they shall deliberate [over 
h]im (cf. 1QS VI, 15). If he is not found [fit for the discipline (cf. 1QS VI, 
14), he shall depart (1QS VI, 16). If he is to enter,] the Guardian shall 
[teach him the interpretation] of the Law. He shall not [touch the pure 
Meal of the Congregation until] another full year (1QS VI, 16-17). [And 
on completing] his year (1QS VI, 18) [they shall hand over his property 
to] the Guardian of the Congregation ... [Wh]en he comes ... 


... on Sabbath day let no [man wear] soiled [garment]s (CD XI, 3). No 
man shall be dr[ess]ed in garments on which there is dust or ... on the 
Sabbath day. No [ma]n shall ta[ke] out of his tent a vessel and foo[d] on 
the Sabbath day. No man shall lift an animal which has fallen into water 
on the Sabbath day (CD xi, 13-14). But if a man falls into water on the 
Sabbath [day], he shall pass to him his garment to lift him out, but he 
shall not carry an instrument [to lift him out on] the Sabbath [day] (cf. 
CD XI, 16-1 7). And if the army.. II ... [on] the Sabbath [day]. And let no 
... Let [n]o man of the seed of Aaron sprinkle [purifying] w[aters (cf. 
1QS III, 9; IV, 21) on the Sabbath day] ... And with a beast he shall 
walk two thousand cubits [on the Sabbath day (CD xi, 5-6). Every 
beast with a defect in it shall be kept at a distance of(?)] thirty stadia 
[from the city of the Sancjtuary (cf. IIQTemple Lll, 1 7-1 8) ... When there 
shall be in the Council of the Community fift[een men, perfectly versed 
in all that is revealed of the Law (1QS VIII, I) and the Pr]ophets, the 
Council of the Community shall be established [in truth (1QS VIII, 5). 
They shall be witnesses to the truth at tfie judgement and elect] of 

Goodwill. They shall be an agreeable offering atoning on behalf of the 
Land (cf. 1 QS VIII, 6, 9) for a[ll iniquity ... He shall teminate the ages of 
Injustice (cf. 1QS IV, 18) ... 


... on the day of s[abbath ... on the da]y of sabbath... [N]o man from the 
seed of Aaron shall sprinkle wa[ter of purification ... They shall not 
bathe or wa]sh (their garments) [on] the great day and fast, on the day 
of [Atonement. He who goes outside his town to graze the] animals 
may go (to a distance of) two thousand cubits. [No man shall eat a 
blemished animaO within thirty stadia [from the sanctu]ary (cf. 1 1QT v, 
1 6-1 8).... When there shall be in the Council of the Community fift[een 
men as God had said through His servants, the pr]ophets, the Council 
of the Community shall be established [In truth as an everlasting 
plantation, witnesses of truth and elect] of Goodwill, sweet fragrance to 
atone for the land... the ages of injustice will end by the judgement and 
the ... (cf 1QS VIII, 1-10). 

vacat In the first weel< [Adam was created... until] he was not brought 
to the garden of Eden and a bone [from his bones was taken to 
become the woman] .... but she (Eve) had [no name (?)] until she was 
not brought to him (Adam) ... For holy is a garden of Eden, and every 
fresh shoot that is in it is holy [as it is written, If a woman conceives 
and bears a male child,] then she shall be unclean for seven days; 
as at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean (Lev xii, 2). 
Then [she shall continue for] thi[rty-three days in the blood\ of her 
purifying {Lev. xii, 4). But if she bears a female child, [then she shall 
be unclean tm vieeks as in her menstruation. And she shall 
contin]ue in the blood of her purifying [for sixty-six days (Lev. xii, 5). 
She shall not touch ] any hallowed things, nor come into the 
Sanctuary until the days of her purification are completed\{Leu. xi 1 , 4). 

The Messianic Rule 


The Messianic Rule was published in 1955 by D. Barth^lemy In DJD,\ 
(Oxford, 1955, pp. 107-18). Originally included in the same Scroll as 
the Community Rule, this short but complete work presents the 
translator with great difficulties owing to its bad state of preservation 
and to the carelessness of the scribe. 

Barth6lemy named the work 'The Rule of the Congregation', but I 
have given It a new title for the following reasons: (1) it was Intended 
for 'all the congregation In the last days'; (2) it is a Rule for a 
Community adapted to tlie requirements of the messianic war against 
the nations; (3) It refers to the presence of the Priest and the Messiah 
of Israel at the Council, and at the Meal described In column 11. 

As in ttie Cave I version of the Community Rule and In the 
Damascus Document, but contrary to the version preserved In 4QS'' 
(=4Q258) and 4QS'' (=4Q256), 'the sons of Zadok, the Priests' form 
the chief authority in the sect. 

In the main, the precepts and the doctrinal concepts of the 
Messianic Rule foreshadow those of the War Rule. A mid-first-century 
BCE date may safely be proposed. Hundreds of tiny papyrus 
fragments of this text written in a cryptic script have been found in 
Cave 4. However, the pieces are so small that they cannot 
independently contribute to the textual criticism of IQS^. See S. J. 
Pfann, 4Q249a-h, DJD, XXXVI, 51 5-74. 

I This is the Rule for all the congregation of Israel in the last days, 
vhen they shall join [the Community to milk accordinq to the lawof 

the sons ofZadok the Priests and of the men of their Covenant v\ho 
have turned aside [from the] my of the people, the men of His 
Councii v\ho l<eep His Covenant in the midst of iniquity, offering 
expiation [for the Land] 

When they come, they shall summon them all, the little children and 
the women also, and they shall read Into their [ears a]ll the precepts of 
the Covenant and shall expound to them all their statutes that they may 
no longer stray In their [errors]. 

And this is the Rule for all the hosts of the congregation, for every 

man born in Israel 

From [his] youth they shall instruct him in the Book of Meditation and 
shall teach him, according to his age, the precepts of the Covenant. He 
[shall be edu]cated in their statutes for ten years... 

At the age of twenty years [he shall be] enrolled, that he may enter 
upon his allotted duties in the midst of his family (and) be joined to the 
holy congregation. He shall not [approach] a woman to know her by 
lying with her before he Is fully twenty years old, when he shall know 
[good] and evil. And thereafter, he shall be accepted when he calls to 
witness the judgements of the Law, and shall be (allowed) to assist at 
the hearing of judgements. 

At the age of twenty-five years he may take his place among the 
foundations (I.e. the officials) of the holy congregation to work in the 
service of the congregation. 

At the age of thirty years he may approach to participate In lawsuits 
and judgements, and may take his place among the chiefs of the 
Thousands of Israel, the chiefs of the Hundreds, Fifties, and Tens, the 
Judges and the officers of their tribes, in all their families, [under the 
authority] of the sons of [Aar]on the Priests. And every head of family in 
the congregation who is chosen to hold office, [to go] and come before 
the congregation, shall strengthen his loins that he may perform his 
tasks among his brethren In accordance with his understanding and 
the perfection of his way According to whether this Is great or little, so 
shall one man be honoured more than another. 

When a man Is advanced in years, he shall be given a duty in the 
[serjvice of the congregation in proportion to his strength. 

No simpleton shall be chosen to hold office in the congregation of 

Israel with regard to lawsuits or judgement, nor carry any responsibility 
In the congregation. Nor shall he hold any office in the war destined to 
vanquish the nations; his family shall merely inscribe him In the army 
register and he stiall do his service in task-work in proportion to his 

The sons of Levi shall hold office, each in his place, under the 
authority of the sons of Aaron. They shall cause all the congregation to 
go and come, each man in his rank, under the direction of the lieads of 
family of the congregation - the leaders. Judges, and officers, 
accondlng to the number of all their hosts - under the authority of the 
sons of Zadok the Priests, [and] (under the direction) [of all the] heads 
of family of the congregation. And when the whole assembly Is 
summoned for judgement, or for a Council of the Community, or for 
war, they shall sanctify them for three days that every one of Its 
members may be prepared. 

These are the men v\Jio shall be called to the Council of the 

Community ... 

All the wi[se men] of the congregation, the learned and the 
Intelligent, men whose way Is perfect and men of ability, together with 
the tribal chiefs and all the Judges and officers, and the chiefs of the 
Thousands, [Hundreds,] 11 Fifties, and Tens, and the Levltes, each man 
In the [cla]ss of his duty; these are the men of renown, the members of 
the assembly summoned to the Council of the Community In Israel 
before the sons of Zadok the Priests. 

And no man smitten with any human uncleanness shall enter the 
assembly of God; no man smitten with any of them shall be confirmed 
In his office In the congregation. No man smitten In his flesh, or 
paralysed In his feet or hands, or lame, or blind, or deaf, or dumb, or 
smitten In his flesh with a visible blemish; no old and tottery man 
unable to stay still In the midst of the congregation; none of these shall 
come to hold office among the congregation of the men of renown, for 
the Angels of Holiness are [with] their [congregation]. Should [one] of 
them have something to say to the Council of Holiness, let [him] be 
questioned privately; but let him not enter among [the congregation] for 
he Is smitten. 

[This shall be the ass]embly of the men of renown [called] to the 
meeting of the Council of the Community 

When God engenders^^ (the Priest-) Messiah, he shall come with 
them [at] the head of the whole congregation of Israel with all [his 
brethren, the sons] of Aaron the Priests, [those called] to the assembly, 
the men of renown; and they shall sit [before him, each man] in the 
order of his dignity. And then [the Mess]iah of Israel shall [come], and 
the chiefs of the [clans of Israel] shall sit before him, [each] in the order 
of his dignity, according to [his place] in their camps and marches. And 
before them shall sit all the heads of [family of the congreg]ation, and 
the wise men of [the holy congregation,] each in the order of his dignity. 

And [when] they shall gather for the common [tab]le, to eat and [to 
drink] new wine, when the common table shall be set for eating and the 
new wine [poured] for drinking, let no man extend his hand over the 
firstfruits of bread and wine before the Priest; for [it is he] who shall 
bless the firstfruits of bread and wine, and shall be the first [to extend] 
his hand over the bread. Thereafter, the Messiah of Israel shall extend 
his hand over the bread, [and] all the congregation of the Community 
[shall utter a] blessing, [each man in the order] of his dignity. 

It is according to this statute that they shall proceed at every me[al at 
which] at least ten men are gathered together. 

The War Scroll 

(IQM, 1Q33, 4Q491-7, 4Q471) 

The nineteen badly mutilated columns of ttiis manuscript from Cave 1 
first appeared in 1954 in a posthumous work by E. L. Sukenik, and 
were re-edited in 1 955, with an English introduction, under the title The 
Dead Sea Scrolls of the Hebrew University (Jerusalem). A few 
detached scraps are represented by 1Q33 and copious fragments of 
six further manuscripts were discovered in Cave 4, and published in 
1982 by IVl. Baillet in DJD, VII (4Q491-6 or4QIVla-f). 4Q497 represents 
tiny fragments of a related text, and 4Q471 or 4QM9 a shorter version 
of 1QIVI (cf E. and H. Eshel, DJD, XXXVI, 439-45). For a new edition 
of all the War Scroll material except 4Q471 see J. Duhaime in J. H. 
Charlesworth ef a/., eds.. The DSS II, Damascus Document, War 
Scroll and Related Documents, 1 995, 80-203. 

Some of the 4Q fragments basically reflect the Cave 1 text and help 
to complete its gaps: M^, M'^, M"^ and IVI^ have been used for this 
purpose, especially in columns I, XIV and XIX. On the other hand, 
and M'^ attest different recensions of the War Rule. Representative 
sections from these manuscripts will be translated separately. 

The contents of the War Rule are as follows: 

Proclamation of war against the Kittim (I) 
Reorganization of Temple worship (II) 
Programme of the forty years' war (II) 
The trumpets (III) 
The standards (lll-IV) 

Disposition and weapons of the front formations (v) 
Movements of the attacking infantry (VI) 
Disposition and movements of the cavalry (VI) 
Age of the soldiers (VI-VII) 

The camp (VII) 

Duties of the Priests and Levites 
(exhortation, trumpet signals) (VII-IV) 
Addresses and prayers of the battle liturgy (X-XII) 
Prayer recited at the moment of victory (XIII) 
Thanksgiving ceremony (XIV) 
Battle against the Kittim (XV-XIX) 

Since the five last columns are more or less repetitious, there has 
been some doubt concerning the unity of the composition as a whole. 
Those who consider all nineteen columns to be the work of one writer 
find in column 1 an introduction, in columns ll-XIV general rules, and in 
columns XV-XIX a 'prophetic' description of the final battle fought 
according to those rules. Other experts explain that columns XV-XIX 
are a Rule annexe dependent on the principal Rule (ll-XIV). 

I am myself inclined to follow the theory first advanced by J. van der 
Ploeg (Le Rouleau de la guerre, Leiden, 1959, 11-22). The primitive 
work, represented in the present composition by columns 1 and XV- 
XIX, draws its inspiration from Daniel xi, 40-XII, 3, and describes the 
final battle against the Kittim. This account was later combined with the 
concept of a holy forty years' war against the entire Gentile world, and 
was extended by the addition of a long series of Rules concerned with 
the military and religious preparation and with the conduct of the 
fighting (columns ll-XIV). This appears to me to offer a more 
satisfactory explanation of ttie literary complexities of ttie manuscript 
than do the previous hypotheses. The text of the manuscripts from 
Cave 4, especially (4Q491 ) and (4Q493)> indicate that diverse 
redactions of the War Rule coexisted in the Qumran library. 

The only certain pointer to the date of the compilation of the War 
Rule is that, since the author made use of the Bool< of Daniel written 
shortly after 164 BCE, his own wori< must have been started after that 
time. But a more accurate dating may be attempted by studying the 
military strategy and tactics described in ttie Scroll. Scholars are 
divided in their opinion as to whether tlie sons of light modelled them 
on Greek or Roman custom, or wtiettier they merely drew ttieir ideas 
from tlie Bible. Scripture doubtless exercised a definite influence on 

the author of this Rule, but there is nevertheless a great deal of 
material completely foreign to it, and he must have possessed, in 
addition, at least some acquaintance with contemporary warfare. 

With Y Yadin and other archaeologists and historians, I believe that 
both the weapons and the tactics of the War Rule correspond to the art 
of war practised by the Roman legion rather than by the Greek 
phalanx. In particular, the square shield (scutum) of the foot-soldier, 
and the buckler of the horseman (paima or clipeus), the battle array of 
three lines (acies triplex), the 'gates of war' or openings between the 
units (intervalla), seem to be characteristically Roman. In addition, only 
the cavalry were to wear greaves - a custom introduced into the 
Roman army during the time of Julius Caesar in the middle of the first 
century BCE. This and similar details, as well as the general 
representation of the Kittim as masters of the world, lead one to 
conclude that the War Rule was written some time after the middle of 
the first century BCE, and since the reference to the 'king' of the Kittim 
points to the Imperial epoch (after 27 BCE), the date of its composition 
should probably be placed in the last decades of the first century BCE 
or at the beginning of the first century CE. 

This work should not be mistaken for a manual of military warfare 
pure and simple. It is a theological writing, and the war of which it 
treats symbolizes the eternal struggle between the spirits of Light and 
Darkness. The phases of its battle are fxed In advance, its plan 
established and its duration predetermined. The opposing forces are 
equally matched and only by the intervention of 'the mighty hand of 
God' is the balance between them to be disturbed when he deals an 
'everlasting blow' to 'Belial and all the host of his kingdom'. 

I For the M[aster. The Rule of] War on the unleashing of the attack of 
the sons of light against the company of the sons of darkness, the 
army of Belial: against the band of Edom, Moab,and the sons 
ofAmmon, and [against the army of the sons of the East and] the 
Philistines, and against the bands of the Kittim ofAssyriaand their 
allies the ungodly of the Covenant 

The sons of Levi, Judah, and Benjamin, the exiles in the desert, shall 
battle against them in ... all their bands when the exiled sons of light 

return from the Desert of the Peoples to camp in the Desert of 
Jerusalem; and after the battle they shall go up from there (to 

[The king] of the Kittim [shall enter] into Egypt, and in his time he 
shall set out in great wrath to wage war against the kings of the north, 
that his fury may destroy and cut the horn of [Israel]. This shall be a time 
of salvation for the people of God, an age of dominion for all the 
members of His company and of everlasting destruction for all the 
company of Belial. The confusion of the sons of Japheth shall be 
[great] and Assyria shall fall unsuccoured. The dominion of the Kittim 
shall come to an end and iniquity shall be vanquished, leaving no 
remnant; [for the sons] of darkness there shall be no escape. [The sons 
of righteous]ness shall shine over all the ends of the earth; they shall go 
on shining until all the seasons of darkness are consumed and, at the 
season appointed by God, His exalted greatness shall shine eternally 
to the peace, blessing, glory, joy, and long life of all the sons of light. 

On the day when the Kittim fall, there shall be battle and terrible 
carnage before the God of Israel, for that shall be the day appointed 
from ancient times for the battle of destruction of the sons of darkness. 
At that time, the assembly of gods and the hosts of men shall battle, 
causing great carnage; on the day of calamity the sons of light shall 
battle with the company of darkness amid the shouts of a mighty 
multitude and the clamour of gods and men to (make manifest) the 
might of God. And it shall be a time of [great] tribulation for the people 
which God shall redeem; of all its afflictions none shall be as this, from 
its sudden beginning until its end in eternal redemption. 

On the day of their battle against the Kittim [they shall set out for] 
carnage. In three lots shall the sons of light brace themselves in battle 
to strike down iniquity and in three lots shall Belial's host gird itself to 
thrust back the company [of God. And when the hearts of the 
detach]ments of foot-soldiers faint, then shall the might of God fortify 
[the hearts of the sons of light]. And with the seventh lot, the mighty 
hand of God shall bring down [the army of Belial, and all] the angels of 
his kingdom, and all the members [of his company in everlasting 
destruction] ... 

{... The priests, the Levites and the heads of [the tribes] ... the priests 

as well as the Levites and the divisions of} (4Q464) II the fifty-two 
heads of family of the congregation. 

They shall rank the chief Priests below the High Priest and his vicar. 
And the twelve chief Priests shall minister at the dally sacrifice before 
God, whereas the twenty-six leaders of the priestly divisions shall 
minister In their divisions. 

Below them, in perpetual ministry, sliall be the chiefs of the Levites 
to the number of twelve, one for each tribe. The leaders of their 
divisions shall minister each In his place. 

Below them shall be the chiefs of the tribes together with the heads 
of family of the congregation. They shall attend dally at the gates of the 
Sanctuary, whereas the leaders of their divisions, with their numbered 
men, shall attend at their appointed times, on new moons and on 
Sabbaths and on all the days of the year, their age being fifty years 
and over. 

These are the men who shall attend at holocausts and sacrif ces to 
prepare sweet-smelling incense for the good pleasure of God, to 
atone for all His congregation, and to satisfy themselves perpetually 
before Him at the table of glory. They shall an-ange all these things 
during the season of the year of Release. 

During the remaining thirty-three years of the war, the men of 
renown, those summoned to the Assembly, together with all the heads 
of family of the congregation, shall choose for themselves fighting-men 
for aii the iands of the nations. They shall arm for themseives warriors 
from all the tribes of Israel to enter the army year by year when they are 
summoned to war. But they shall arm no man for entry into the army 
during the years of Release, for they are Sabbaths of rest for Israel. In 
the thirty-five years of service, the war shall be fought during six; the 
whole congregation shall fight It together. And during the remaining 
twenty-nine years the war shall be divided. During the first year they 
shall fight against Aram-Naharalm; during the second, against the 
sons of Lud; during the third, against the remnant of the sons of Aram, 
against Uz and Hui and Togar and IVIesha beyond the Euphrates; 
during the fourth and fifth, they shall fight against the sons of 
Arpachshad; during the sixth and seventh, against all the sons of 
Assyria and Persia and the East as far as the Great Desert; during the 

eighth year they shall light against the sons of Elam; during the ninth, 
against the sons of Ishmael and Keturah. In the ten years which foiiow, 
the war shall be divided against all the sons of Ham according to [their 
cians and in their ha]bitations; and during the ten years which remain, 
the war shall be divided against all [the sons of Japheth in] their 

[The Rule for the trumpets of Summons and the trumpe]ts of Alarm 
according to all their duties 

... [the trumpets of Summons shaii sound for disposal in] iii battle 
formations and to summon the foot-soldiers to advance when the 
gates of war shaii open; and the trumpets of Alarm shaii sound for 
massacre, and for ambush, and for pursuit when the enemy shall be 
smitten, and for retreat from battle. 

On the trumpets calling the congregation they shaii write. The Called 
of God. 

On ttie trumpets calling the chiefs they stiall write. The Princes of 


On the trumpets of the levies they shaii write. The Army of God. 

On the trumpets of the men of renown and of the heads of family of 
the congregation gathered in the house of Assembly they shaii write. 
Summoned by God to the Council of Holiness. 

On the trumpets of the camps they shall write. The Peace of God in 
the Camps of His Saints. 

And on the trumpets for breaking camp they shaii write. The mighty 
Deeds of God shall Crush the Enemy, Putting to Flight all those v\ho 
Hate Righteousness and bringing Shame on those vtio Hate Him. 

On the trumpets for battle formations they shaii write, Formations of 
the Divisions of God for the Vengeance of His Wrath on the Sons of 

On the trumpets summoning the foot-soldiers to advance towards 
the enemy formations when the gates of war are opened they shaii 
write. Reminder of Vengeance in God's Appointed Time. 

On ttie trumpets of massacre they shaii write. The Mighty Hand of 
God in War shall Cause all the Ungodly Slain to Fall. 

On the trumpets of ambush they shaii write. The Mysteries of God 

shall Undo Wickedness. 

On the trumpets of pursuit they shall write, God has Smitten All the 
Sons of Darkness; His Fury shall not End until They are Utterly 

On the trumpets of retreat, when they retreat from battle to the 
formation, they shall write, God has Reassembled. 

On the trumpets of retum from battle against the enemy when they 
journey to the congregation in Jerusalem they shall write. Rejoicings of 
God in the Peaceful Retum. 

The Rule for the standards of Uie vJhole congregation according to 

their levies 

On the great standard at the head of the people they shall write, The 
People of God, together with the names of Israel and Aaron, and the 
names of the twelve [tribes of Israel], according to the order of their 


On the standards of the camp columns formed by three tribes they 
shall write, ... of God, together with the name of the leader of the camp 

On the standard of the tribe they shall write. Banner of God, together 
with the name of the leader of [the tribe and the names of the chiefs of 

its clans]. 

[On the standard of the Myriad they shall write, ... of God, together 
with] the name of the chief of the IVIyriad and the names of the [leaders 
of its Thousands]. 

[On the standard of the Thousand they shall write, ... of God, together 
with the name of the chief of the Thousand and the names of the 
leaders of its Hundreds]. 

[On the standard of Hundred] ... 
IV On the standard of Merari they shall write. The Votive-Offering of 
God, together with the name of the chief of Merari and the names of 
the leaders of its Thousands. 

On the standard of the Thousand they shall write. The Wrath of God 
is Kindled against Belial and against the Men of his Company, 
Leaving no Remnant, together with the name of the chief of the 
Thousand and the names of the leaders of its Hundreds. 

On the standard of the Hundred they shall write, From God comes 
the Might of War against All Sinful Fiesh, together with the name of 
the chief of the Hundred and the names of the leaders of its Fifties. 

On the standard of the Fifty they shall write, The Stand of the 
Ungodly is Ended by the Power of God, together with the name of the 
chief of the Fifty and the names of the leaders of its Tens. 

On the standard of the Ten they shall write. Praised be God on the 
Ten-stringed Harp, together with the name of the chief of the Ten and 
the names of the nine men under his command. 

When they march out to battle they shall write on their standards, Truth 
of God, Justiceof God, Glory of God, Judgement of God, followed by 
the whole ordered list of their names. 

When they approach for battle they shall write on ttieir standards, 
Right Hand of God, Appointed Time of God, Tumult of God, Slain of 
God, followed by the whole list of their names. 

When they return from battle they shall write on their standards. 
Honour of God, Majesty of God, Splendour of God, Glory of God, 
together with the whole list of their names. 

The Rule for the standards of the congregation 
When they set out for battle they shall write on ttie first standard 
Congrega^on of God, on the second standard Camps of God, on the 
third standard Tribes of God, on the fourth standard Clans of God, on 
the fifth standard Divisions of God, on the sixth standard Assembly of 
God, on the seventh standard The Called of God, on the eighth 
standard Hosts of God; and they stiall write the list of their names with 
all their order. 

When they approach for battle they shall write on ttieir standards. 
War of God, Vengeance of God, Trial of God, Reward of God, Power 
of God, Retributions of God, Might of God, Extenvination of God for 
all the Nations of Vanity; and they shall write on ttiem the wtiole list of 
their names. 

When they return from battle they shall write on their standards. 
Salvation of God, Victory of God, Help of God, Support of God, Joy of 

God, Thanksgivings of God, Praise of God, Peace of God. 

[The measurements of the standards.] The standard of the whole 
congregation shall be fourteen cubits long; the standard [of the three 
tribes,] thirteen cubits long; [the standard of the tribe,] twelve cubits; 
[the standard of the Myriad], eleven cubits; [the standard of the 
Thousand, ten cubits; the standard of the Hundred,] nine cubits; [the 
standard of the Fifty, eight] cubits; the standard of the Ten, s[even 
cubits] ... 

V And on the sh[ield of] the Prince of all the congregation they shall 
write his name, together with the names of Israel, Levi and Aaron, and 
the names of the twelve tribes of Israel according to the order of their 
precedence, with the names of their twelve chiefs. 

Ttie Rule for ttte ordering of the batUe divisions to complete a front 
formation vhen their host has reached its full number 

The formation shall consist of one thousand men ranked seven lines 
deep, each man standing behind the other. 

They shall all hold shields of bronze bumlshed like mirrors. The 
shield shall be edged with an Interlaced border and with inlaid 
ornament, a work of art In pure gold and silver and bronze and 
precious stones, a many-coloured design worked by a craftsman. The 
length of the shield shall be two and a half cubits and Its width one and 
a half cubits. 

In their hands they shall hold a spear arKi a sword. The length of the 
spear shall be seven cubits, of which the socket and spike shall 
measure half a cubit. The socket shall be edged with three embossed 
interlaced rings of pure gold and silver and bronze, a work of art. The 
inlaid omaments on both edges of the ring shall be bordered with 
precious stones - patterned bands worked by a craftsman - and 
(embossed) with ears of com. Between the rings, the socket shall be 
embossed with artistry like a pillar. The spike shall be made of brilliant 
white Iron, the work of a craftsman; In Its centre, pointing towards the 
tip, shall be ears of corn in pure gold. 

The swords shall be made of pure iron refined by the smelter and 

blanched to resemble a mirror, the work of a craftsman; on both sides 
(of their blades) pointing towards the tip, figured ears of com shall be 
embossed in pure gold, and they shall have two straight borders on 
each side. The length of the sword shall be one and a half cubits and 
Its width four fingers. The width of the scabbard shall be four thumbs. 
There shall be four palms to the scabbard (from the girdle), and It shall 
be attached (to the girdle) on both sides for a length of five palms (?). 
The hilt of the sword shall be of pure hom worked by a craftsman, with 
patterned bands In gold and silver and precious stones... vacat 

When... shall stand, the ... they shall order the seven battle divisions, 
division after division... thirty cubits where the me[n of the division] shall 

VI seven times and shall return to their positions. 

And after them, three divisions of foot-soldlers shall advance and 
shall station themselves between the formations, and the first division 
shall hurl seven javelins of war towards the enemy formation. On the 
point of the javelins they shall write, ShiningJavelinof the Power of 
God; and on the darts of the second division they shall write, Bloody 
Spikes to Bring Down tlie Slain by the Wrath of God; and on the 
javelins of the third division they shall write. Flaming Blade to Devour 
the Wicked Struck Down by the Judgement of God. All these shall hurl 
their javelins seven times and shall aften/vards return to their positions. 

Then two divisions of foot-soldiers shall advance and shall station 
themselves between the two formations. The first division shall be 
armed with a spear and a shield, and the second with a shield and a 
sword, to bring down the slain by the judgement of God, and to bend 
the enemy formation by the power of God, to pay the reward of their 
wickedness to all the nations of vanity. And sovereignty shall be to the 
God of Israel, and He shall accomplish mighty deeds by the saints of 
his people. 

Seven troops of horsemen shall also station themselves to the right 
and to the left of the formation; their troops shall stand on this (side) 
and on that, seven hundred horsemen on one fiank and seven hundred 

horsemen on the other. Two hundred horsemen shall advance with the 
thousand men of the formation of foot-soldiers; arxi they shall likewise 
station themselves on both [flanks] of the camp. Altogether there shall 
be four thousand six hundred (men), and one thousand cavalrymen 
with the men of ttie army formations, fifty to each formation. The 
horsemen, together with the cavalry of the army shall number six 
thousand: five hundred to each tribe. 

The horses advancing into battle with the foot-soldiers shall all be 
stallions; they shall be swift, sensitive of mouth, and sound of wind, and 
of the required age, trained for war, and accustomed to noise and to 
every (kind of) sight. Their riders shall be gallant fighting men and 
skilled horsemen, and their age shall be from thirty to forty-five years. 
The horsemen of the army shall be from forty to fifty years old. They 
[and ttieir mounts shall wear breast-plates,] helmets, and greaves; they 
shall carry in their hands bucklers, and a spear [eight cubits] long. [The 
horseman advancing with the foot-soldiers shall carry] bows and 
arrows and javelins of war. They shall all hold themselves prepared ... 
of God and to spill the blood of the wicked ... 

VII The men of the army shall be from forty to fifty years old. The 
inspectors of the camps shall be from fifty to sixty years old. The 
officers shall be from forty to fifty years old. The despoilers of the slain, 
the plunderers of booty, the cleansers of ttie land, the keepers of the 
baggage, and those who furnish the provisions shall be from twenty- 
five to thirty years old. 

No boy or woman shall enter their camps, from the time they leave 
Jerusalem and march out to war until they return. No man who is lame, 
or blind, or crippled, or afflicted with a lasting bodily blemish, or smitten 
with a bodily impurity, none of these shall march out to war with them. 
They shall all be freely enlisted for war, perfect in spirit and body and 
prepared for the Day of Vengeance. And no man shall go down with 
them on ttie day of battle wtw is impure because of his 'fount', for the 
holy angels shall be with tfieir hosts. And there shall be a space of 
about two thousand cubits between all their camps for the place 

serving as a latrine, so that no indecent nakedness may be seen in tlie 
surroundings of tlieir camps. 

When the battle formations are marshaiied facing the enemy 
formation facing formation, seven Priests of the sons of Aaron shaii 
advance from the middie gates to the place between the formations. 
They shall be clothed in vestments of white cloth of flax, in a fine linen 
tunic and fine linen breeches; and they shall be girdled with fine cloth of 
flax embroidered with blue, purple, and scarlet thread, a many- 
coloured design worked by a craftsman. And on their heads they shall 
wear mitred turbans. These shall be battle raiment; they shall not take 
them into the Sanctuary. 

The f rst Priest shall advance before the men of the formation to 
strengthen their hand for battle, and the six other Priests shall hold in 
their hands the trumpets of Summons, and the trumpets of the 
Reminder, and the trumpets of Alarm (for massacre), and the trumpets 
of Pursuit, and the trumpets of Retreat. And when the Priests advance 
to the place between the formations, seven Levites shall accompany 
them bearing in their hands seven rams' horns; and three officers of 
the Levites shall walk before the Priests and Levites. The Priests shall 
sound the two trumpets of Sum[mons for the gates of] war to open fifty 
shields (wide) and the foot-soldiers shall advance, fifty from one gate 
[and fifty from the other. With them shall advance] the officers of the 
Levites, and they shall advance with every formation according to all 
this R[ule]. 

[The Priests shall sound the trumpets, and two divisions of foot-] 
soldiers [shall advance] from the gate [and shall] station [themselves] 
between the two [formations] ... VIII the trumpets shall sound to direct 
the slingers until they have cast seven times. Afterwards, the Priests 
shall sound for them the trumpets of Retreat and they shall return to the 
flank of the first formation to take up their position. 

Then the Priests shall sound the trumpets of Summons and three 
divisions of foot-soldiers shall advance from the gates and shall station 
themselves between the formations; the horsemen shall be on their 
flanks, to the right and to the left. The Priests shall sound a sustained 
blast on the tmmpets for battle array, and the columns shall move to 

their (battle) array, each man to his piace. And when they have tal<en 
up their stand in three an^ys, the Priests shall sound a second signal, 
soft and sustained, for them to advance until they are close to the 
enemy formation. They shall seize their weapons, and the Priests shall 
then blow a shrill staccato blast on the six trumpets of Massacre to 
direct the battle, and the Levites and all the blowers of rams' horns 
shall sound a mighty alarm to terrify the heart of the enemy, and 
therewith the javelins shall fly out to bring down the slain. Then the 
sound of the horns shall cease, but the Priests stiall continue to blow a 
shrill staccato blast on the trumpets to direct the battle until they have 
thrown seven times against the enemy formation. And then they shall 
sound a soft, a sustained, and a shrill sound on the trumpets of 

It is according to this Rule that the Priests shall sound the trumpets 
for the three divisions. With the first throw, the [Priests] shall sound [on 
the trumpets] a mighty alarm to direct the ba[ttle until they have thrown 
seven times. Then] the Priests [shall sound] for them on the trumpets 
[of Retreat a soft, a sustained, and a shrill sound, and they shall return] 
to their positions in the formation. 

[Then the Priests shall blow the trumpets of Summons and the two 
divisions of foot-soldiers shall advance from the gates] and shall stand 
[between the formations. And the Priests shall then blow the trumpets 
of] IVIassacre, [and the Levites and all the blowers of rams' horns shall 
sound an alarm, a mighty blast, and therewith] IX they shall set about to 
bring down the slain with their hands. All the people shall cease their 
clamour but the Priests shall continue to blow the trumpets of 
Massacre to direct the battle until the enemy is smitten and put to flight; 
and the Priests shall blow to direct the battle. 

And when they are smitten before them, the Priests shall sound the 
trumpets of Summons and all the foot-soldiers shall rally to them from 
the midst of the front formations, and the six divisions, together with the 
fighting division, shall take up their stations. Altogether, they shall be 
seven formations: twenty-eight thousarxJ flghting men and six thousand 

All these shall pursue the enemy to destroy him in an everlasting 
destruction in the battle of God. The Priests shall sound for them the 

trumpets of Pursuit, and they shall deploy against all the enemy In a 
pursuit to destruction; arxi the horsemen shall thrust them back on the 
flanks of the battle until they are utterly destroyed. 

And as the slain men fell, the Priests shall trumpet from afer; they 
shall not approach the slain lest they be defiled with unclean blood. For 
they are holy, and they shall rxjt profene the anointing of their 
priesthood with the blood of nations of vanity. 

The Rule for changes in battle order to form the position of a squa[re 
with tovers], a concave line wth tovers, a convex line wth tov\ers, a 
shallow/ convex line obtained by the advance of the centre, or (by the 
advance of) both flanlis to terrify the enemy 

The shields of the towers shall be three cubits long and their spears 
eight cubits. The tower shall advance from the formation and shall have 
one hundred shields to each side; in this [manner,] the tower shall be 
surrounded on three sides by three hundred shields. And it shall also 
have two gates, [one to the right] and one to the left. 

They shall write on all the shields of the towers: on the first, Michael, 
[on the second, Gabriel, on the third,] Sariel, and on the fourth, 
Raphael. Michael and Gabriel [shall stand on the right, and Sariel and 
Raphael on the left] ... they shall set an ambush to... 
... X our camps and to keep us from all that is indecent and evil. 

Furthermore, (Moses) taught us, 'Thou art in the midst of us, a 
mighty God and terrible, causing all our enemies to flee before [us].' 
He taught our generations in former times saying. When you draw 
near to battle, the Priest shall rise and speak to the people saying. 
Hear, O Israel! You draw near to battle this day against your 
enemies. Do not fear! Do not let your hearts be afraid! Do not be 
Perrifled], and have no fear! For your God goes wth you to fight for 
you against your enemies that He may deliver you' {Deul. XX, 2-4). 

Our officers shall speak to all those prepared for battle. They shall 
strengthen by the power of God the freely devoted of heart, and shall 
make all the fearful of heart withdraw; they shall fortify all the mighty 
men of war. They shall recount that which Thou [saidst] through IVIoses: 
When you go to war in your land against the oppressor Who 
oppresses you, jyou] shall blow the trumpets, and you shall tie 

remembered before your God and shall be saved from your enemies 
(Num. X, 9). 

O God of Israel, who is like Thee 
in heaven or on earth? 

Who accomplishes deeds and mighty works like Thine? 

Who is like Thy people Israel 

which Thou hast chosen for Thyself 

from all the peoples of the lands; 

the people of the saints of the Covenant, 

instructed in the laws 

and learned in wisdom ... 

who have heard the voice of IVIajesty 

and have seen the Angels of Holiness, 

whose ear has been unstopped, 

and who have heard profound things? 

[Thou, O God, hast created] the expanse of the heavens 

and the host of heavenly lights, 

the tasks of the spirits 

and the dominion of the Holy Ones, 

the treasury of glory 

[and the canopy of the] clouds. 

(Thou art Creator of) the earth 

and of the laws dividing it into desert and grassland; 

of all that it brings forth 

and of all its fruits [according to their kinds;] 

of the circle of the seas 

and of the gathering-place of the rivers 

and of the divisions of the deeps; 

of the beasts and birds 

and of the shape of Adam 

and of the gene[rations of] his [seed]; 

of the confusion of tongues 

and of the scattering of the peoples. 

of the dwelling In clans 
and of the Inheritance of lands; 
...of the sacred seasons 
and of the cycles of the years 
and of time everlasting. 

XI Truly the battle Is Thine! Their bodies are crushed by the might of 
Thy hand and there is no man to bury them. 

Thou didst deliver Goliath of Gath, the mighty vl^arrior, into the hands 
of David Thy servant, because in place of the sword and in place of the 
spear he put his trust in Thy great Name; for Thine is the battle. Many 
times, by Thy great Name, did he triumph over the Philistines. Many 
times hast Thou also delivered us by the hand of our kings through Thy 
loving-kindness, and not in accordance with our works by which we 
have done evil, nor according to our rebellious deeds. 

Truly the battle is Thine and the power from Thee! It is not ours. Our 
strength and the power of our hands accomplish no mighty deeds 
except by Thy power and by the might of Thy great valour This Thou 
hast taught us from ancient times, saying, A star shall come out of 
Jacob, and a sceptre shall rise out of Israel. He shall smite the 
temples ofMoab and destroy all the children ofSheth. He shall rule 
out of Jacob and shall cause the sur\/ivors of the city to perish. The 
enemy shall be his possession and Israel shall accomplish mighty 
deeds (Num. xxiv, 1 7-1 9). 

By the hand of Thine anointed, who discerned Thy testimonies, Thou 
hast revealed to us the [times] of the battles of Thy hands that Thou 
mayest glorify Thyself in our enemies by levelling the hordes of Belial, 
the seven nations of vanity, by the harxJ of Thy poor wfxjm Thou hast 
redeemed [by Thy might] and by the fullness of Thy marvellous power. 
(Thou hast opened) the door of hope to the melting heart: Thou wilt do 
to them as Thou didst to Pharaoh, and to the captains of his chariots In 
the Red Sea. Thou wilt kindle the downcast of spirit and they shall be a 
flaming torch in the straw to consume ungodliness and never to cease 
till iniquity Is destroyed. 

From ancient times Thou hast fore[told the hour] when the might of 
Thy hand (would be raised) against the KIttIm, saying, Assyria shall 

fall by the smrd of no man, the sword of no mere man shall devour 
him (Isa. xxxi, 8). For Thou wilt deliver into the hands of the poor the 
enemies from all the lands, to humble the mighty of the peoples by the 
hand of those bent to the dust, to bring upon the [head of Thine 
enemies] the reward of the wicked, and to justify Thy true judgement in 
the midst of all the sons of men, and to make for Thyself an everlasting 
Name among the people [whom Thou hast redeemed] ... of battles to 
be magnified and sanctified In the eyes of the remnant of the peoples, 
that ttiey may krxjw... when Thou chastisest Gog and all his assembly 
gathered about him ... 

For Thou wilt fight with them from heaven... XII For the multitude of 
the Holy Ones [is with Thee] in heaven, and the host of the Angels is in 
Thy holy abode, praising Thy Name. And Thou hast established in [a 
community] for Thyself the elect of Thy holy people. [The list] of the 
names of aii their host is with Thee in the abode of Thy holiness; [the 
reckoning of the saints] is in Thy giorious dwelling-place. Thou hast 
recorded for them, with the graving-tool of life, the favours of [Thy] 
blessings and the Covenant of Thy peace, that Thou mayest reign 
[over them] for ever and ever and throughout all the eternai ages. Thou 
wilt muster the [hosts of] Thine [eiject, in their Thousands and IVIyriads, 
with Thy Holy Ones [and with aii] Thine Angels, that they may be mighty 
in battle, [and may smite] the rebels of the earth by Thy great 
judgements, arxJ that [they may triumph] togetfier with the elect of 

For Thou art [terribie], O God, in the glory of Thy kingdom, and the 
congregation of Thy Holy Ones is among us for everlasting succour 
We will despise kings, we wiii mock and scorn the mighty; for our Lord 
is holy and the King of Glory is with us together with the Holy Ones. 
Valiant [warriors] of the angelic host are among our numbered men, 
and the Hero of war is with our congregation; the host of His spirits is 
with our foot-soidiers and horsemen. [They are as] clouds, as ciouds of 
dew (covering) the earth, as a shower of rain shedding judgement on 
all that grows on the earth. 

Rise up, O Hero! 

Lead off Thy captives, O Glorious One! 

Gather up Thy spoils, O Author of mighty deeds! 

Lay Thy hand on the neoi< of Thine enemies 

and Thy feet on the pile of the slain! 

Smite the nations, Thine adversaries, 

and devour the flesh of the sinner with Thy sword! 

Fill Thy land with glory 

and Thine inheritance with blessing! 

Let there be a multitude of cattle InThy fields, 

and in Thy palaces silver and gold and precious stones! 

O Zion, rejoice greatly! 

O Jerusalem, show thyself amidst jubilation! 

Rejoice, all you cities of Judah; 

keep your gates ever open 

that the hosts of the nations 

may be brought in! 

Their kings shall serve you 

and all your oppressors shall bow down before you; 

[they shall lick] the dust [of your feet]. 

Shout for joy, [O daughters of] my people! 

Deck yourselves with glorious jewels 

and rule over [the kingdoms of the nations! 

Sovereignty shall be to the Lord] 

and everlasting dominion to Israel. 

...XIII (The High Priest) shall come, and his brethren the Priests and 
the Levites, and all the elders of the army shall be with him; and 
standing, they shall bless Vne God of Israel and all His works of truth, 
and shall execrate Belial there and all Uie spirits of his company. 
Speaking, they shall say: 

Blessed be the God of Israel for all His holy purpose and for His 
works of truth! Blessed be all those wtio [serve] Him in righteousness 
and who know Him by faith! 

Cursed be Belial for his sinful purpose and may he be execrated for 
his wicked rule! Cursed be all the spirits of his company for their 

ungodly purpose atxl may they be execrated for all their service of 

Truly they are the company of Darkness, but the company of God is 
one of [eternal] Light. 

[Thou art] the God of our fathers; we bless Thy Name for ever. We 
are the people of Thine [inheritance]; Thou didst make a Covenant with 
our fathers, and wilt establish it with their children throughout eternal 
ages. And in all Thy glorious testimonies there has been a reminder of 
Thy mercies among us to succour the remnant, the survivors of Thy 
Covenant, that they might [recount] Thy works of truth and the 
judgements of Thy marvellous mighty deeds. 

Thou hast created us for Thyself, [O God], that we may be an 
everlasting people. Thou hast decreed for us a destiny of Light 
according to Thy truth. And the Prince of Light Thou hast appointed 
from ancient times to come to our support; [all the sons of 
righteousness are in his hand], and all the spirits of truth are under his 
dominion. But Belial, the Angel of IVIalevolence, Thou hast created for 
the Pit; his [rule] is in Darkness and his purpose is to bring about 
wickedness and iniquity All the spirits of his company, the Angels of 
Destruction, walk according to the precepts of Darkness; towards 
them is their [inclination]. 

But let us, the company of Thy truth, rejoice in Thy mighty hand and 
be glad for Thy salvation, and exult because of Thy suc[cour and] 
peace. O God of Israel, who can compare with Thee in might? Thy 
mighty hand is with the poor. Which angel or prince can compare with 
Thy [redeeming] succour? [For Thou hast appointed] the day of battle 
from ancient times ... [to come to the aid] of truth and to destroy 
iniquity to bring Darkness low and to magnify Light ... to stand for ever, 
and to destroy all the sons of Darkness ... 

... XIV like the fire of His wrath against the idols of Egypt. 

And wtien they have risen from ttie slain to retum to the camp, they 
shall all sing the Psalm of Retum. And in the morning, they shall wash 
their garments, and shall cleanse themselves of the blood of the 
bodies of the ungodly. And they shall return to the positions in which 
they stood In battle fbrmation before the fall of the enemy slain, and 

there they shall all bless the God of Israel. Rejoicing together, they shall 
praise His Name, and speaking they shall say: 

Blessed be the God of Israel 
who keeps mercy towards His Covenant, 
and the appointed times of salvation 
with the people He has delivered! 

He has called them that staggered 

to [marvellous mighty deeds], 

and has gathered in the assembly of the nations 

to destruction without any remnant. 

He has lifted up in judgement the fearful of heart 

and has opened the mouth of the dumb 

that they might praise {the mighty} (4Q491 ) works [of God]. 

He has taught war [to the hand] of the feeble 

and steadied the trembling knee; 

he has braced the back of the smitten. 

Among the poor in spirit [there is power] 

over the hard of heart, 

and by the perfect of way 

all the nations of wickedness have come to an end: 
not one of their mighty men stands, 
but we are the remnant [of Thy people.] 

{Blessed be} (4Q491 ) Thy Name, O God of mercies, 

who hast kept the Covenant with our fathers. 

In all our generations Thou hast bestowed 

Thy wonderful favours on the remnant [of Thy people] 

under the dominion of Belial. 

During all the mysteries of his Malevolence 

he has not made [us] stray from Thy Covenant; 

Thou hast driven his spirite [of destruction] 

far from [us]. 

Thou hast preserved the soul of Thy redeemed 

[when the men] of his dominion {acted wickedly) (4Q491 ). 

Thou hast raised the fallen by Thy strength, 

but hast cut down the great In height 

[and hast brought down the lofty]. 

There Is no rescue for all their mighty men 

and no refuge for their swift men; 

Thou givest to their honoured men a reward of shame, 

all their empty existence [hast Thou turned to nothing]. 

But we. Thy holy people, will praise Thy Name 

because of the works of Thy truth. 

We will exalt Thy splendour because of Thy mighty deeds 

[In all the] seasons and appointed times for ever, 

at the coming of day and at nightfall 

and at the departure of evening and morning. 

For great {Is the design of Thy glory} (4Q49I) 

and of Thy wonderful mysteries on high 

that [Thou shouldst raise up] dust before Thee 

and lay low the 'gods'. 

Rise up, rise up, O God of gods, 

raise Thyself In mlg{ht, King of Kings} (4.Q491 )! 

May all the sons of Darkness [scatter before Thee]! 

The light of Thy greatness [shall shine forth] 

[on 'go] ds' and men. 

[It shall be like a fire bur]nlng 

In the dark places of perdition; 

It shall burn the sinners In the perdition of hell. 

In an eternal blaze 

... In all the eternal seasons. 

They shall recite there [all the] war [hy]mns. Afterwards ttiey shall 
return to [their] cam[ps] ...XV For this shall be a time of distress for 
Israel, [and of the summons] to war against all the nations. There shall 
be eternal deliverance for the company of God, but destruction for all 
the nations of wickedness. 

All ttK>se [who are ready] for battle stiall march out and stiall pitch 

their camp before the king of the Kittim and before all the host of Belial 
gathered about him for the Day [of Revenge] by the Sword of God. 

Then the High Priest shall rise, with the [Priests], his brethren, and 
the Levites, and all the men of the army, and he shall recite aloud the 
Prayer In Time of War [written in the Book] of the Rule concerning this 
time, and also all their Hymns. He shall marshal ail the formations 
there, as Is [written in the Book of War], and the priest appointed for 
the Day of Revenge by the voice of all his brethren shall go forward to 
strengthen the [hearts of the fighting men]. Speaking, he shall say: 

Be strong and valiant; be warriors! Fear noti Do not be [confused 
and do not let your hearts be afraid!) Do not be fearful; fear them not! 
Do not fall back ... for they are a congregation of wickedness and ail 
their works are in Darkness; they tend towards Darkness. [They make 
for themselves] a refuge [in falsehood] and their power shall vanish like 
smoke. Ail the multitudes of their community., shall not be found. 
Damned as they are, ail the substance of their wickedness shall 
quickly fade, like a flower in [the summer-time]. 

[Be brave and] strong for the battle of God! For this day is [the time 
of the battle of] God against all the host of Belial, [and of the judgement 
of] all flesh. The God of Israel lifts His hand in His marvellous [might] 
against ail the spirits of wickedness. [The hosts of] the warrior 'gods' 
gird themselves for battle, [and the] formations of the Holy Ones 
[prepare themselves], for the Day [of Revenge] ... XVI... For the God of 
Israel has called out the sword against ail the nations, and He will do 
mighty deeds by the saints of His people. 

And they shall obey all this Rule [on] the [day] when they stand 
before the camps of the Kittim 

The Priests shall afterwards sound for them the trumpets of the 
Reminder, and the gates of war shall open; the foot-soldiers shall 
advance and the columns shall station themselves between the 
formations. Tfie Priests shall sound for tfiem the signal, 'Battle Array, 
and at the sound of the tnjmpets the columns [shall deploy] until every 
man Is in his place. The Priests shall then sound a secorid signal [for 
them to advance], and when they are within throwing distance of the 
formation of tfie Kittim, each man shall seize his weapon of war. Then 

the six [Priests shall blow on] the trumpets of Massacre a shriii 
staccato blast to direct the battle, and the Levites and all the blowers of 
rams' homs shall sound [a battle alarm], a mighty clamour; and with 
this clamour they shall begin to bring down the slain from among the 
Kittim. All the people shall cease their clamour, [but the Priests shall 
continue to] sound the tmmpets of Massacre, and battle shall be fought 
against the Kittim (vacat). And wtien [Belial] girds himself to come to 
the aid of the sons of darkness, and when the slain among the foot- 
soldiers begin to fall by the mysteries of God, and when all the men 
appointed for battle are put to ordeal by them, the Priests shall sound 
the trumpets of Summons for another formation of the reserve to 
advance into battle; and they shall take up their stand between the 
formations. And for those engaged [in battle] they shall sourxl the 

Then the High Priest shall draw near, and standing before the 
formation, he shall strengthen by the power of God their hearts [and 
hands] in His battle. Speaking he shall say: ... the slain, for you have 
heard from ancient times through the mysteries of God ... 

...XVII He will pay their reward with burning [fire by the hand of] 
those tested in the crucible. He will sharpen His weapons and will not 
tire until all the wicked nations are destroyed. Remember the 
judgement [of Nadab and Ab]ihu, sons of Aaron, by whose judgement 
God showed Himself holy in the eyes [of Israel. But Eleazar] and 
Ithamar He confirmed in an everlasting [priestly] Covenant. 

Be strong and fear not; [for they tend] towards chaos and confusion, 
and they lean on that which is not and [shall not be. To the God] of 
Israel belongs all that is and shall be; [He knows] all the happenings of 
eternity This is the day appointed by Him for the defeat and overthrow 
of the Prince of the kingdom of wickedness, and He will send eternal 
succour to the company of His redeemed by the might of the princely 
Angel of the kingdom of Michael. With everlasting light He will 
enlighten with joy [the children] of Israel; peace and blessing shall be 
with the company of God. He will raise up the kingdom of IVIichael in 
the midst of the gods, and the realm of Israel in the midst of all flesh. 
Righteousness shall rejoice on high, and all the children of His truth 
shall jubilate in eternal knowledge. And you, the sons of His Covenant, 

be strong in the ordeal of God! His mysteries shall uphold you until He 
moves His hand for His trials to come to an end. 

After these words, the Priests shall sound to marshal them into the 
divisions of the formation; arxl at the sound of the trumpets the 
columns shall deploy until [every man is] in his place. Then the Priests 
shall sound a second signal on the trumpets for them to advance, and 
when the [foot-]soldiers approach throwing distance of the formation of 
the Kittim, every man shall seize his weapon of war. The Priests shall 
blow the trumpets of Massacre, [and the Levites and all] the blowers of 
rams' horns shall sound a battle alarm, and the foot-soldiers shall 
stretch out their hands against the host of the Kittim; [and at the sound 
of the alarm] they shall begin to bring down the slain. All the people 
shall cease their clamour, but the Priests shall continue to blow [the 
trumpets of IVIassacre and battle shall be fought against the Kittim.] 

... and in the third lot ... that the slain may fall [by the mysteries] of 
God ... XVIII [In the seventh lot] when the great hand of God is raised in 
an everlasting blow against Belial and all the hosts of his kingdom, and 
when Assyria is pursued [amidst the shouts of Angels] and the clamour 
of the Holy Ones, the sons of Japheth shall fall to rise no more. The 
Kittim shall be crushed without [remnant, and no man shall be saved 
from among them]. 

[At that time, on the day] when the hand of the God of Israel is raised 
against all the multitude of Belial, the Priests shall blow [the six 
trumpets] of the Reminder and all the battle formations shall rally to 
them and shall divide against all the [camps of the] Kittim to destroy 
them utterly [And as] the sun speeds to its setting on that day the High 
Priest shall stand, together [with the Levites] who are with him and the 
[tribal] chiefs [and the elders] of the army and they shall bless the God 
of Israel there. Speaking they shall say: 

Blessed be Thy Name, O God [of gods], for Thou hast worked great 
marvels [with Thy people]! Thou hast kept Thy Covenant with us from of 
old, and hast opened to us the gates of salvation many times. For the 
[sake of Thy Covenant Thou hast removed our misery, in accordance 
with] Thy [goodness] towards us. Thou hast acted for the sake of Thy 
Name, O God of righteousness ... [Thou hast worked a marvellous] 
miracle [for us], and from ancient times there never was anything like it. 

For Thou didst know the time appointed for us and it has appeared 
[before us] this day ... [Thou hast shown] us [Thy merciful tiand] in 
everiasting redemption by causing [the dominion of] the enemy to faii 
bacl< for ever. (Thou hast shown us) Thy mighty hand in [a strol<e of 
destruction in the war against aii] our enemies. 

And now the day speeds us to the pursuit of ttieir multitude ... Thou 
hast delivered up the hearts of the brave so that they stand no more. 
For Thine is the power, and the battle is in Thy handsl ... XIX For our 
Sovereign is holy and the King of Glory is with us; the [host of his 
spirits is with our foot-soldiers and horsemen. They are as clouds, as 
clouds of dew] covering the earth, and as a shower of rain shedding 
righteousness on [all that grows there]. 

[Rise up, O Hero! 

Lead off Thy captives, O Glorious Onel 

Gather up] Thy spoils, O Author of mighty deeds! 

Lay Thy hand on the neck of Thine enemies 

and Thy feet [on the pile of the slain! 

Smite the nations. Thine adversaries], 

and devour flesh with Thy sword! 

Fill Thy land with glory 

and Thine inheritance with blessing! 

[Let there be a multitude of cattle InThy fields, 

and in] Thy palaces 

[silver and gold and precious stones]! 

O Zion, rejoice greatly! 

Rejoice all you cities of Judah! 

[Keep your gates ever open 

that the] hosts of the nations 

[maybe brought in]! 

Their kings shall serve you 

and all your oppressors shall bow down before you; 

[they shall lick the dust of your feet. 

Shout for joy, O daughters of] my people! 

Deck yourselves with glorious jewels 
[and rule over the kingdom of the nations! 
Sovereignty shall be to the Lord] 
and everlasting dominion to Israel. 

(1 QM combined with 4QIV|MQ492) 
{Then they shall gather in} the camp that night to rest until the morning. 
And in the morning {they shall go to the place where the formation 
stood before the} warriors of the Kittim fell, as well as the multitudes of 
Assyria, and the hosts of all the [assembled] nations {to discover 
whether} the multitude of the stricken are dead {with none to bury 
them}, those who fell there under the Sword of God. And the High 
Priest shall draw near, [with his vicar, and the chief Priests] {and the 
Levites} with the Prince of the battle, and all the chiefs of the 
formations and their numbered men; [they shall return to the positions 
which they held before the] slain [began to fall] from among the Kittim, 
and there they shall praise the God {the Most High} ... 

The War Scroll from Cave 4 


Of the two groups of fragments belonging to (40491), the first 
echoes sections from columns II, VII, XVI and XVII of 1 0M, but it also 
contains passages without parallels there. The second unit, a poem, 
entitled by the editor 'The Song of Michael arxJ of the Just', is 
additional to 10M. 

As for the manuscript designated (4Q493), its surviving lines 
recall 10M VII, xvi, etc., but do not represent the same recension. 

= 40491, fre. 1-3 

... There shall be one thousand cubits between the [camp and the 
latrine and] rK> nakedness [whatever] shall be seen in their 
surroundings. And when they set out to prepare the battle [to cur]b [the 
enemy, there shall be] among them some exempted in the lot of each 
tribe according to their numbered men for [each] day's duty. On that 
day, some men from all their tribes shall set out from their camps 
towards the House of Meeting ... the [Priestjs, the Levites, and all the 
chiefs of the camps shall go out towards them. They will pass there 
before ... according to the Thousands, Hundreds, Fifties and Tens. 
Whoever shall not [be clean because of his 'fount' on] that [nig]ht shall 
not go with them to the battle, for the holy angels shall be with their 
formations together ... When the formation called up for that day's 
battle to pass to all ... of the war, three formations shall stand, 
formations behind formations. They shall set a space between [all] the 
formations [and they shall go out] to battle in succession. These are the 
[foot-soldie]rs and beside them the [horse]men. (They shall stand 

between the forma]tions. And if they set up an ambush for a formation, 
the three ambushing formations shall be at a distance and shall not 
ri[se] ... of the war and they [shaii he]ar the trumpets of Alarm and the 
[foot-]soidiers [wiii begin to bring dow]n the guiity dead. Afterwards the 
ambush shaii rise from its hiding-piace arranged in formations. The 
reassembly: from the right and from the left, from be[hind and from the 
front, f|our direction[s] ... in the battles of annihilation. And all the 
formations engaged in combat with the ene[my will be in] one [place. 
The f]irst formation [will go out to the battle] and the second stand ... on 
their post. With the completion of their time, the first shall retum and 
rise ... The sec[ond] ... When the battle is joined. And the second 
formation shaii have completed its time and they shall retum and st[and 
on their post]. And the th[ird] ... 

And the chief Priest and his brethren, [the Priests, and] the Levites 
and the m[en of the orde]r [shaii stand]. And the Priests shall blow the 
trumpets continuously ... and a girdle of fine cloth of flax embroidered 
with blue, purple and scarlet threads, a many-coloured design 
produced by a craftsman, and a fine linen tunic and fine linen breeches 
and a mitred turban [on their heads]. They shall not take them to the 
sanctuary f[or] they are ba[ttle] raiments. According to all this rule ... 

The Book of War 

(4Q285, 11Q14) 

A collection of ten small fragments, designated by J. T. Milik as 
Serekh ha-Milhamah or Rule of War, are akin to the War Scroll, 
probably representing Its missing end section. Allusions are found to 
Levites blowing trumpets (fr. 8), to the archangel Michael (fr. 10), to the 
Prince of the Congregation, Identified as the Branch of David (fts. 4 
and 7), as well as to the Klttlm and their slain (frs. 2, 4, 7), all familiar 
from 1QM. The poorly preserved benediction (ft-. 8) can be 
reconstructed with the help of 11Q14 which contains, however, some 
notable variants. Fragment 4 seems to Identify the defeated opponent 
as the biblical Gog (Ezek. xxxlx), the chief foe of the final age, here no 
doubt equated with the king of the Klttlm. Fragment 7, erroneously 
labelled by some as the 'Pierced Messiah ftagment'. Is based on an 
Interpretation of tea. x, 34-xl, 1, and should be read In connection with 
4Q161, frs. 8-10, an Isaiah Commentary from Cave 4, and the 
Blessing of the Prince of the Congregation (IQS'', v, 20-29), both 
referring to the triumphant Davldic Messiah, expected to put an 
opponent, no doubt the king of the Klttlm, to death. Only fts. 1 , 4, 7 and 
8 are suitable for translation. 

For the editioprinceps, see P. S. Alexander and G. Vermes, DJD, 
XXXVI, 228-46. For 11Q14, see R Garcia Martinez et a/., DJD, XXIII, 
243-51. For a preliminary study see G. Vermes, 'The Oxford Forum 
for Qumran Research: Seminar on the Rule of War (4Q285)', JJS 43 
(1992), 85-90. 

4Q285, fr. 1 

... because of Thy name and ... Michael, G[abrie]l, [Sariel and Raphael] 
... with the elect of ... 

4Q285, fr. 4 

... wicl<edness will be smitten ... [the Prinjce of the Congregation and 
all ls[rael] ... [which wa]s written [in the bool< of Ezekiel the Prophet, / 
wll strike your bowfrom your left hand and wll make your arrom drop 
from your right hand.] On the mountains of [Israel you shall fall] ... 
[the l<ing of] the Kittim ... [the Prjince of the congregation [will pursue 
them] as far as the [Great] Sea ... [and they shall fleje from before 
Israel. In that time ... he shall stand against them and they shall be 
stirred against them ... and they shall return to the dry land. In that time 
... and they shall bring him (the king of the Kittim?) before the Prince [of 
the Congregation] 7 

The Messiah, Branch of David 

[As it is written in the book of] Isaiah the Prophet, [The thickets of the 
forest] will be cut [dom vvth an axe and Lebanon by a majestic one 
vill f\ all. And there shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse 
[...] the Branch of David and they will enter into judgement with [...] and 
the Prince of the Congregation, the Br[anch of David] will kill him [ ... by 
strok]es and by wounds. And a Priest [of renown(?)] will command [ ... 

4Q285, fr.8 

[Answering, he shall say] to the sons of [l]srael: May you be blessed in 
the name of the Most High [God] ... and may His holy name be blessed 
for ever and ever. [May all His holy angels be blessed. May] the M[ost 
High] God [bless] you. [May He shine His face towards you and open 
for you His] good [treasure] which is in heaven [to bring down on your 
land] showers of blessing, dew, rain, [early rain] and late rain in His/its 
time, and to give [you the fruit of the produce of corn, wine and o]il 
plentiful. And may the land [prod]uce for [you fruits of delight. And you 
shall eat and grow fa]t. And there shall be no miscarriage [in yo]ur 
[la]n[d] and no [sickness, blight or mildew] shall be seen in [its] 
produ[ce. And there shall be no loss of children n]or stumbling in [your] 
congrega[tion, and wild beasts shall withdraw] from your land and there 
shall be no pestil[ence in your land.] For God is wi[th you and His holy 
angels stand in your congregation, and His] holy [name] shall be 
invoked upon you ... in your midst... 


And he shall bless them in the name [of the God] of Israel. Answering 
he shall say, ... to the sons of Israel: May [yo]u be blessed for ever and 
ever and may His ... be blessed ... and may His lioly angels be 
blessed. May the Most High God bless you. May He shine His face 
towards you and open to you His good treasure which is in heaven to 
bring down on your land slxjwers of blessing, dew, rain, early rain and 
late rain in His/its time to give you the fruit of the produce of corn, wine 
and oil plentiful. May tlie land produce for you fruits of delight. And you 
shall eat and grow ^t. And tliere shall be rK> miscarriage in your land 
and no sickness, blight or mildew shall be seen in its produce. There 
shall be no loss of children, nor stumbling in your congregation and the 

wild beasts shall withdraw from [your land.] The sword shall not pass 
through your land. For God is with you and His holy angels shall be 
present In your congregation, and His holy name shall be invoked upon 

The Temple Scroll 
(1 1 QT=1 1 Q1 9-21 , 4Q365a, 4Q524) 

Discovered in 1956 in Cave II, the Temple Scroll did not emerge from 
semi-clandestinity until the Six Day War in June 1967. It is the longest 
Qumran manuscript, measuring over twenty-eight feet. There are also 
other fragments pertaining to tfie same document from Cave 11 
(11Q20) and from Cave 4 (4Q365a). Originaiiy it consisted of sixty- 
seven columns. 

The major part of the scroll deals with the Temple (building and 
furniture) and cultic worship, especially sacrifices on Sabbaths and the 
many feasts of the year. Most of the legislation depends, directly or 
indirectly, on Exodus, Leviticus, and more particularly on Deuteronomy, 
but there are also occasional non-bibiicai regulations. The beginning of 
the manuscript is badly mutilated. Column I is missing. Columns lll-XII 
are so fragmented that only a very hypothetical reconstruction, 
exclusively from biblical texts, is possible (cf. most extensively E. 
Qimron, The Temple Scroll, 1996). I have decided not to translate 
them but indicate their probable contents in the summary that follows: 

1 . Covenant between God and Israel (II). 

2. Building of the Temple, measurements of the Sanctuary, the 
Holy of Holies, the chambers and colonnades (iii-Vii). 

3. Description of the mercy seat, the ctierubim, the veil, the table, 
the golden lamp-stand, etc. (Vii-Xi). 

4. Outline of the sacrificesand the altar (XI-XII). 

5. Daily, weekly and monthly sacrifices and those offered on 
festivals (Xiii-XXiX). 

6. Buildings in the Temple courtyards: the stairhouse, the house of 

the laver, the house for sacred vessels, the slaughterhouse, etc. 

7. The three courtyards of the Temple, one for the priests, one for 
Jewish men over twenty years of age, and one for women and 
children (XXXVI-XLV). 

8. Purity regulations concerning the Temple and the city of the 
Sanctuary (XLVI-XLVIII). 

9. Purity regulations concerning the cities of Israel (XLVIII-LI). 

10. Judges and officers (LI). 

1 1 . Laws relating to idolatry and to sacrificial animals (LI-LIII). 

12. Vows and oaths (LIII-LIV). 

13. Laws against apostasy (LIV-LV). 

14. Laws relating to priests and Levites and detailed statutes of 
the Jewish king (LVI-LIX). 

15. IVIiscellaneous laws regarding priestly dues, idols, witnesses, 
the conduct of war, the rebellious son, crimes punishable by 
'hanging', and incestuous relations (LX-LXVI). 

The sequence of subjects generally follows the Bible, but an obvious 
effort has been made to systematize, harmonize and reinterpret the 
laws. Sections complementary to Scripture include the Temple 
legislation (lll-XII, XXX-XLV), festivals (XVII-XXIX), purity material as 
rules relating to the Temple and the city (XLVI-XLVII), and the statutes 
of the king (LVI — LIX). The aim of the redactor is to present the 
message of the scroll not as an Interpretation of the Bible, but as an 
immediate divine revelation. For this purpose, not only does he 
formulate the supplementary legislation as directly spoken by God, but 
also frequently substitutes 'I' for 'the Lord = YHWH' of Scripture. 

Although the view has been advanced that the Temple Scroll is not a 
Qumran composition, the contrary thesis has a solid foundation. The 
relationship between this writing and the Damascus Document is 
particularly striking in the case of the prohibition of royal polygamy of 
marriage between uncle and niece, and of marital relations within the 
cityofthe Sanctuary (compare CD IV, 20-V, II; XII, 1-2 with TS LVII, 16- 
18; LXVI, 15-17; XLV, 11-12), to name the most significant instances. 
Note also that the death penalty of 'hanging' (probably crucifixion) 
reserved for traitors appears both in TS LXIV, 6-13 and in the Nahum 

Commentary (cf. p. 504). Since the Damascus Document and the 
Nahum Commentary are more likely to depend on the Temple Scroll 
than vice versa, the latter may safely be dated to the second century 
BCE. But It may also have an antecedent history reaching back to the 
pre-Qumran age. 

As noted, Cave 4 has also yielded five ^Irly mutilated fragments 
(4Q365a), palaeographically dated to the mid-first century BCE, some 
of which have been used by Yadln. Fragment 1 deals with the festival 
of Unleavened Bread (11QTS XVII, II); fragment 2 corresponds to 
1 1 QTS XXXVIII, 4-1 5 while the other three fragments cannot be placed 
within the known version of the text. 

The composition Is available in a magisterial edition by Mgael 
Yadln, who first published it in Hebrew in 1977 and subsequently, 
shortly before his death, in English under the titie The Temple Scroll I- 
III (Jerusalem, 1983). IVIy translation is often indebted to Yadin's 
editorial work. Further improvements are due to E. Qimron, The 
Temple Scroll: A Critical Edition with Extensive Reconstructions 
(Beer-Sheva/Jerusalem, 1996). For 11Q20-21, see F Garcia Martinez 
etal., DJD, XXIII, 357-414. For4Q365a, see S. White, DJD, XIII, 319- 
33. For4Q524, see E. Puech, DJD, XXV, 79-1 14. 

II [Behold, I will make a covenant.] 

[For it is something dreadful that I] will do [to you.] [I myself will expel 
from before you] the A[morites, the Ganaanites, the Hittites, the 
Girgashifles, the Pe[rizzites, the Hivites and] the Jebusites. Ta[ke care 
not to make a cove]nant with the inhabitants of the country [which you 
are to] enter so that they may not prove a sn[are for you.] You must 
destroy their [altajrs, [smash Uieir] pillars [and] cut down their [sacred 
trees and burn] [their] idols [with fire]. You must not desire silver and 
gold so [that you may not be ensnared by them; for that would be 
abominable to me]. You must [not] br[ing any abominable idol] into your 
house [and come] under ttie ban togeUier with it. You shall de[test and 
abominate it], for it is urKler the ban. You shall not worship [another] 
go[d, for YHWH, whose name is] [Jealous], is a jealous God. Take 
care not to make a [covenant with the inhabitants of the country] [so 
that, when they whore] after [their gojds [and] sacrifice to [them and 

invite you,] [you may not eat of their sacrifices and] t[al<e their 
daughters for your sons, and their daughters may not whore after] their 
[gods] and cau[se your sons to whore after them.] ... 51 

XIII [This is what you shall offer on the altar:] t[wo y]ear[ling lambs] 
without blemish [every day as a perpetual holocaust. You shall offer the 
first in the morning; and you shall offer the other lamb in the evening; 
the corresponding grain-offering will be a te]nth of fine flour mixed with 
[a quarter of a hin of beaten oil; it shall be a perpetual holocaust of 
soothing odour, an offering by fire] to YHWH; and the corresponding 
drink-offering shall be a quart[er of a hin of] wine. [The priest who 
offers the holocaust shall receive the skin of] the burnt-[offering which 
he has offered. You shall offer the other lamb in the evenjing with the 
same grain-[offering as in the] morning and with the corresponding 
drink-offering as an offering by fire, a soothing odour to YHWH ... 

On the S[abbath] days you shall offer two [yearling rams without 
blemish and two] XIV [tenths of an ephah of fine flour, mixed with oil, 
for a grain-offering and the corresponding drink-offering. This is the 
holocaust of every Sabbath in addition to the perpetual holocaust and 
the corresponding drink-offering. On the first day of each month you 
shall offer a holocaust to YHWH: two young bulls, one ram, seven 
yearling rams without blemish and a grain-offe]ring of fine flour, [three 
tenths of an ephah] mix[ed with half a hin of oil, and a drink-offering, 
ha]lf a hin for [each young bull and a grain-offering of fine flour mixed 
with oil, two tenths of an ephah] with a third [of a hin, and wine for a 
drink-offering, one third of a /?/nfor each ram;] ... one tenth [of fine flour 
for] a grain-[offering, mixed with a quarter of a hin, and wine, a quarter 
of a hi]n for each lamb ... a soothing [odour] to YHWH on the first day 
of each month. This is the burnt-offering for each month for the months 
of the year ... On the first day of the [first] month [the months (of the 
year) shall start; it shall be the first month] of the year [for you. You shall 
do no] work. [You shall offer a he-goat for a sin-offering.] It shall be 
offered by itself to expiate [for you. You shall offer a holocaust: a 
bullock], a ram, [seven yearli]ng ram lambs [without blemish] ... 
[ad]di[tional to the bu]r[nt-offering for the new moon, and a grain- 
offering of three tenths of fine flour mixed with oil], half a hin [for each 
bullock, and wi]ne for a drink-offering, [half a hin, a soothing odour to 

YHWH, and two] tenths of fine flour mixed [with oil, one third of a hin. 
You stiall offer wine for a drinl<-offering,] one th[ird] of a hin for the ram, 
[an offering by fire, of soothing odour to YHWH; arxl one tenth of fine 
flour], a grain-offerin[g mixed with a quarter of a hinol oil. You shall 
offer wine for a drink-offering, a quarter of a hin] for each [ram] ... 
lambs and for the he-g[oat] ... XV [eajch day ... seven [year]ling [lambs] 
and a he-[goat] ... according to this statute. For the ordination (of the 
priests), one ram for each [day and] baskets of bread for all the ra[ms 
of the ordination, one basket for] each [ram]. They shall divide all the 
rams and the baskets for the seve[n days of the ordination for each] 
day; according to [their] dlvlslon[s, they shall offer to YHWH the right 
thigh] of the ram as a holocaust and [the fat covering the entrails and 
the] two kidneys and the fat on them [and on] the loins and the whole fat 
tail close to the backbone and the appendage of the liver and the 
corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering according to the 
sta[tute. They shall take one unleavened cake from the] basket and 
one cake of bread with oil and [one] wafer, [and they shall put It all on 
the fat] together with the offering of the right thigh. Those who sacrifice 
shall wave the rams and the baskets of bread as a wa[ve-offering 
be]fore YHWH. This is a holocaust, an offering by fire, of soothing 
odour before YHWH. [They shall burn everything on the altar over] the 
holocaust, to complete their ordination during the seven days of 

If the High Priest is to [minister to YHWH, whoever] has been 
ordained to put on the vestments in place of his father, shall offer [a bull 
fo]r all the people and another for the priests. He shall offer the one for 
the priests first. The elders of the priest[s] shall lay [their hands] XVI 
[on] its [hea]d and after them the High Priest and all the [priests. They 
shall slaughter] the bull [before YHWH]. The elders of the priests shall 
take from the blood of the bull and [place] it [with their finger on the 
horns of the altar] and they shall pour [the blood] around the four 
corners of the [altar] ledge ... [and they shall take from Its blood and 
pl]ace it [on his right ear lobe and on the thumb of his right hand and 
the big toe of his] right [foot. They shall sprinkle on him and his 
vestments some of the blood which was on the altar]... [he] shall be 
[holy] all his days. [He shall not go near any dead body]. He shall [not] 

render himself unclean [even for his father or mother,] for [he is] hol[y to 
YHWH, his God] ... [He shall offer on the al]tar and bum [the fat of the 
first bulO ... [all] the fat on the entrails and [the appendage of the liver 
and the two kidne]ys and the fat on the[m] and [the fat on] the loins, and 
the corresponding grain-offering and drinl<-[offering according to their 
statute,] he shall bur[n them on the aitar.] It shall be [a burnt-joffering, an 
offering by fire, of soothing odour be[fore YHWH. The flesh of tfie buii], 
its skin and offal, they shaii burn outeide the [sanctuary city on a wood 
fire] in a place reserved for sin-offerings. Tfiere they shall bur[n it with 
its head and legs] together with aii its errtrails. They shall bum all of it 
there except the fat. it is a sin-[offering]. He shaii take the second buii, 
which is for the people, and by it he shaii expiate [for all the people of] 
the assembly, by its blood and fat. As he did with the fir[st] bull, [so he 
shaii do] with the buii of the assembly. He shall place with his finger 
some of its biood on the horns of the [altar, and the remainder of| its 
blood, he shaii sprinkle o[n the f]our corners of the aitar ledge, and [its 
fat and] the corresponding [grain-] offering and drink-offering, he shaii 
burn on the aitar. it is a sin-offering for the assembly XVII ... They shaii 
rejoice because expiation has been made for them ... This day [shaii] 
be a holy gathering for them, [an eternal rule for aii their generations] 
wherever they dwell. They shaii rejoice and ... 

[Let] them [prepare on the fourteejnth day of the first month [between 
dusk and dark the Passover of YHWH]. They shaii sacrifice (it) before 
the evening offering and shaii sacrifice ... men from twenty years of age 
and over shall prepare It. They shaii eat it at night in tfie tioly courts. 
They shaii rise early and each shaii go to his tent ... 

On the fifteenth day of this month (there shaii be) a ho[ly] gathering. 
You shaii do no work of labour on it. (it shaii be) a seven-day feast of 
unleavened bread for YHWH. You shall offer on each of the[se] seven 
days a holocaust to YHWH: two young bulls, a ram, and seven ram 
iambs without blemish and a he-goat for a sin-offering and the 
corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering [according to the 
stajtute for the young bulls, rams, i[am]bs and the he-goat. On the 
seventh day [(there shaii be) an assembly] for [YHWH]. You shaii do no 
work on it. XVIII ... [he-] goat for a sin-offering ... [the corresponding 
grain-offering and drink-] offering according to the statute; one tenth of 

fine flour [mixed with a quarter of a hin of oil and] a quarter of a hin of 
wine for a drini<-offering ... [he shaii expiate] for aii the guiit of the 
peopie of the assembly ... This shall be an eternal [m]le for you [for your 
generations wherever you dwell.) Then they shall offer ttie one ram, 
on[ce], on the day of the waving of the sheaf. 

You shall count seven complete Sabbaths from the day of your 
bringing the sheaf of [the wave-offering. You shall c]ount until the 
morrow of the seventh Sabbath. You shall count [fifty] days. You shall 
bring a new grain-offering to YHWH from your homes, [a loaf of fine 
fi]ou[r], freshly baked with leaven. They are firstfruits to YHWH, wheat 
bread, twe[lve cakes, two] tenths of fine fiour in each cake ... the tribes 
of Israel. They shall offer XIX ... their [grain-offerin]g and dr[ink-offering] 
according to the statute. The [priests] shall wave ... [wave-offering with 
the bread of] the firstfruits. They shall b[elong to] the priests and they 
shall eat them In the [Inner] court[yard], [as a ne]w [grain-offering], the 
bread of the firstfruits. Then ... new bread from freshly ripened ears. 
[On this] da[y] there shall be [a holy gathering, an eter]nal [rule] for their 
generations. [They] shall [do] no work. It is the feast of Weeks and the 
feast of Firstfruits, an eterna[l] memorial. 

You [shall count] seven weeks from the day when you bring the new 
grain-offering to YHW [H], the bread of firstfruits. Seven full Sabbaths 
[shall elapse un]til you have counted fifty days to the morrow of the 
seventh Sabbath. [You] shall [bring] new wine for a drink-offering, four 
bins from all the tribes of Israel, one third of a hin for each tribe. 

They shall offer on this day with the wine twelve rams to YHWH; all 
the chiefs of the clans of Israel XX ... [r]ams and the corresponding 
grain-offering according to the statute; two [tenths of fine flour mixed 
with oil, one third of a h]\n of oil for a ram; with this drink-offering ... 
seven yearling ram lambs and a he-[goat] ... assembly ... their [grain- 
offering and drink-offering] (shall be) according to the statute 
concerning young bulls and the ram ... to YHWH. At the quarter of the 
day, they shall offer ... [the r]ams and the drink-offering. They shall offer 
... fourteen yearling ram lambs ... the burnt-offering. They shall prepare 
them ... and they shall burn their fat on the altar, [the fat covering the 
entrails] and the fat that is on them, and [the appendage of the liver 
with] ttie kidneys he shall remove and the ^t on [them], and that which 

is on the loins and the fat tail close to the backbone. They shall b[um ail 
on the altar] together with the corresponding grain-offering and drink- 
offering, an offering by fire, of soothing odou[r before YHWH]. They 
shall offer every grairvoffering joined to a drink-offering according to 
[the statute]. They shall take a handful from [eve]ry grain-offering 
offered either with frankincense or dry, (this being) its [memorial 
portion], and burn it on the altar. They shall eat the remainder in the 
[in]n[er] courtyard. The priests shall e[a]t it unleavened. It shall not be 
eaten with leaven. It shall be ea[ten] on that day [before] sun[se]t. They 
shall salt all their offerings. You shall never allow the covenarrt of salt to 

They shall offer to YHWH an offering from the rams and the lambs, 
the right thigh, the breast, [the cheeks, the stomac]h and the foreleg as 
far as the shoulder bone, and they shall wave them as a wave-offering. 
XXI [The priests'] portions [shall] be the thigh of the offering and the 
breast ... [the foreieg]s, the cheeks and the stomachs ... [as an eternal 
rule, from the children of isra]ei and the shoulder remaining of the 
foreleg [shall be for the Levites] ... an eternal rule for them and for their 
seed .. the princes of the Thousands ... [from] the rams and from [the 
iambs, one ram and one ram lamb (shall belong) to the priests; to the 
Levites], one [ra]m, one iamb; and to every [tribe, on]e [ram], one iamb 
for ail the tri[bes], the [twe]ive tribes of Israel. They shall eat them [on 
that day, in the out]er [courtyard] before YHWH. 

... [the priest]s shall drink there first and the Levites [second] ... the 
princes of the standards first ... [men of] renown. After them the whole 
people, from the great to the small, shall begin to drink the new wine. 
They [shall not e]a[t] any un[ri]pe grapes from the vines, for [on] this 
[da]y they shall expiate for the tirosh. The children of Israel shall rejoice 
before YHWH, an eternal [rule] for their generations wherever they 
dwell. They shall rejoice on [this] d[ay for they have begun] to pour out 
an intoxicating drink-offering, tfie new wine, on the altar of YHWH, year 
by year. 

[You shajli count from that day seven weeks, seven times (seven 
days), forty-nine days; there shall be seven full Sabbaths; until the 
morrow of the seventh Sabbath you shall count fifty days. You shall then 
offer new oil from the homes of [the trjibes of the children of Isjrael, half 

a hin from a tribe, new beaten oil ... oil on the altar of the holocaust, 
firstfruits before YHWH. XXII ... [shall expi]ate with it for all the 

congregation before [YHWH] ... with this oil, half a hin ... [according to 
the st]atute, a holocaust, an offering by fire, of soothing [odour to 
YHWH] ... [With] this oil they shall light the lamps ... the princes of the 
Thousands with ... fourteen [yearling] m[ale lamb]s and the 
corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering ... [for the lambs and] 
the rams. The Levites shall slaughter ... [and] the priests, the sons of 
Aaron, [shall spri]nkle their blood [on the altar all around] ... [and] they 
shall burn their fat on the altar of the [holocaust] ... [and the 
corresponding grain-offering] and drink-offering, they shall burn over 
the fats ... [an offering by fire, of soothing odour to] YHWH. They shall 
take away fr[om] ... the right thigh and the breast ... the cheeks and the 
stomach shall be the priests' portion according to the statute 
concerning them. (They shall give) to the Levites the shoulder 
Afterwards they shall bring them (the offerings) out to the children of 
Israel, and the children of Israel shall give the prie[st]s one ram, one 
lamb, and to the Levites, one ram, one lamb, and to each tribe, one 
ram, one lamb. They shall eat them on that day in the outer courtyard 
before YHWH, an eternal rule for their generations, year by year 
Afterwards they shall eat from the olives and anoint themselves with 
the new oil, for on this day they shall expiate for [al]l [the o]ll of the land 
before YHWH once yearly. They shall rejoice XXIII ... 

The High Priest shall offer the [holocaust of the Levites] first, and 
afterwards he shall send up in smoke the holocaust of the tribe of 
Judah, and w[hen he] is sending it up in smoke, they shall slaughter 
before him the he-goat first and he shall lift up its blood in a bowl to the 
altar and with his finger he shall pu[t some] of the blood to the four 
horns of the alta[r] of the holocaust and to the four corners of the altar 
ledge, and shall toss the blood towards the bas[e] of the altar ledge all 
around. He shall burn Its fat on the altar, the fat covering the entrails 
and that over the entrails. The appendage of the liver with the kidneys 
he shall remove as well as the fat over them and on the loins. He shall 
send up In smoke all of them on the altar together with the 
corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering, an offering by fire of 
soothing odour to YHWH. And XXIV ... ttie flesh, of [soothing] odour; it 

shall be [an offering by fire to YHWH. Thus they must do to every] 
young bull, and to every ram and to [every lamb] and Its limbs (?) shall 
remain apart. The corresponding [grain-offering] and drink-offering 
shall be on It, an [eternal] rule for your generations before YHWH. 

After this holocaust he shall offer the holocaust of the tribe of Judah 
separately As he tias done with the txjlocaust of ttie Levltes, so shall 
he do with the holocaust of the children of Judah after the Levites. On 
the second day he shall first offer the holocaust of Benjamin and after It 
he shall offer ttie holocaust of the children of Joseph, Ephraim and 
IVIanasseh together. On ttie third day he shall offer the holocaust of 
Reuben separately and the holocaust of Simeon separately On the 
fourth day he shall offer the holocaust of Issachar separately and the 
holocaust of Zebulun separately. On the fifth day he stiall offer the 
holocaust of Gad separately and the holocaust of Asfier separately On 
the sixth day XXV [he shall offer the holocaust of Dan separately and 
the holocaust of Naphtall separately] ... 

In the [seventh] m[onth, on the first day of the month, you shall have] a 
sacred rest, a remembrance announced by a trumpet blast, a [holy] 
ga[therlng. You shall offer a holocaust, an offering by fire, of soothing 
odour be]fore YHWH. You shall o[ffer on]e [young bull,] one ram, 
seve[n] ye[ar]llng [lamb]s [without blemish and one he-goat for a sln- 
offerlng, and] the corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering 
according to the statute concerning the[m, of soothing odour to YHWH, 
In addition to] the perpetual [holocaus]t [and the holo]caust of the new 
moon. Afterwards [you shall offer] this [holocaust] at the third part of the 
day an eternal rule for your generatlon[s wherever you dwell.] You shall 
rejoice on this day. On it you shall do no work. A sacred rest shall this 
day be for you. 

The tenth of this month is the Day of Atonement. You shall mortify 
yourselves. For any person who does not mortify himself on this 
selfsame day shall be cut off from his people. You shall offer on It a 
holocaust to YHWH: one young bull, one ram, seven ram lambs, one 
he-goat for a sin-offering. In addition to the sin-offering of the 
atonement and the corresponding grain-offering and drink-offering 
according to the statute concerning the young bull, the ram, the lambs 
and the he-goat. For the sIn-offerIng of the atonement you shall offer 

two rams for holocaust. The High Priest shall offer one for himself and 
his father's house XXVI ... [The High Prie]st [shall cast lots on the two 
goats,] o[ne] lot for YHWH and one for Azazel. He shall slaughter the 
goat [on] which [YHWH's lot has fellen and shall lift up] its blood in a 
golden bowl which is in [his ha]nd, [and do] with its blo[od as he has 
done with the blood of] his young bull and shall expiate with it for all the 
people of the assembly. He shall send up in smoke its fat and the 
corresponding grain-and drinl<-offering on the altar of the holocaust. Its 
flesh, skin and dung they shall burn beside his young bull. It is a sin- 
offering for the wtK>le assembly. He shall expiate with it for all the 
people of the assembly and it shall be forgiven to them. He shall wash 
his hands and feet of the blood of the sin-offering and shall come to the 
living goat and shall confess over its head the iniquities of the children 
of Israel together with all their guilt, all their sins. He shall put them on 
the head of the goat and despatch it to Azazel in the desert by the 
hand of the man who is waiting ready. The goat shall bear all the 
iniquities of (the children of Israel). XXVII ... [and he shall expiate] for ail 
the children of Israel and It shall be forgiven to them ... Afterwards he 
shall offer the young bull, the r[a]m, and [the lambs, according to] the 
[sta]tute relating to them, on the altar of the holocaust, and the 
[ho]locaust will be accepted for the children of Israel, an eternal rule for 
their generations. Once a year this day shall be for them a memorial. 
They shall do no work on it, for it shall be [to] them a Sabbath of sacred 
rest. Whoever shall do work on It or shall not mortify himself on it, shall 
be cut off from the midst of his people. A Sabbath of sacred rest, a 
holy gathering shall this day be for you. You shall sanctify it as a 
memorial wherever you dwell and you shall do no work. 

On the fifteenth day of this month XXVIII ... [the corresponding] grain- 
offering [and drink-offering, all on] the altar, an offering by fire, of 
s[oothing odour to YHWH. On] the second [day:] twelve young bulls, 
[two rams, four]teen [lambs] and one he-goat [for a sin-offerin]g [and 
the corresponding gr]ai[n-offering and drink-offering] according to the 
statute concerning the young bulls, the ram[s], the lambs [and] the he- 
goat; it is an offering by fire, of soothing odour to YHWH. 

On the third day eleven young bulls, two rams, fourteen lambs and 
one he-goat for a sin-offering and the corresponding grain-offering and 

drink-offering according to the statute corx^eming the young bulls, the 
rams, the lambs and the he-goat. 

On the fo[ur]th day ten young bulls, two rams, fourteen yearling ram 
lambs and one he-goat for a sin-offering and the corresponding grain- 
offering and drinl<-offering for the young bulls, XXIX [the rams, the 
lambs and the he-goat ... On the fifth day ... and the corresponding 
grain-offering] arxJ drink-offer[ing] ... in the house on which I [shall 
cause] my name to rest ... holocausts, [each on its] day according to 
the law of this statute, always from the children of Israel in addition to 
their freewillofferings in regard to all that they offer, their drink-offerings 
and all their gifts that they shall bring to me in order to be acceptable. I 
shall accept them and they shall be my people and I shall be for them 
for ever. I will dwell with them for ever and ever and will sanctify my 
[sa]nctuary by my glory. I will cause my glory to rest on it until the day of 
creation on which I shall create my sanctuary, establishing it for myself 
for all time according to the covenant which I have made with Jacob in 

XXX ... You shall make ... for stairs, a stair[case] ... in the house 
which you shall build ... You [shall make] a staircase north of the 
Temple, a square house, twenty cubits from one corner to the other 
alongside its four corners. Its distance from the wall of the Temple shall 
be seven cubits on the north-west. You shall make the width of its wall 
four cubits ... like the Temple and its inside from corner to corner 
twelv[e cubits.] (There shall be) a square column in its middle, in the 
centre; its width four cubits on each side around which the stairs wind 
... XXXI In the upper chamber of [this] ho[use you shall make a ga]te 
opening to the roof of the Temple and a way (shall be) made through 
this gate towards the entrance ... of the Temple by which one can 
reach the upper chamber of the Temple. Overlay with gold [a]ll this 
stairhouse, its walls, its gates and its roof, from inside [and from] 
outside, its column and its stairs. [You] shall do everything as I tell you. 
You shall make a square house for the laver in the south-east, on all its 
sides, (each) twenty-one cubits; fifty cubits distant from the altar. The 
width of the wall shall be four cubits, and the height [t]wenty cubits ... 
Make gates for it on the east, on the north and on the west. The width 
of the gates shall be four cubits and the height seven XXXII ... You shall 

make in the wall of this house, on the inside, recesses, and in them ... 
one cubit (In) width and their height four cubits above the ground. They 
shall be overlaid with gold on which they shall place their clothes which 
they have worn on arrival. Above the house of the ... when they come to 
minister In the sanctuary. You shall make a trench around the laver 
beside its house and the trench shall go [from the house of] the laver to 
a cavity. It shall descend [rapld]ly to the ground where the water shall 
flow and disappear. It shall not be touched by any man for it Is mingled 
with the blood of the holocaust. XXXIII They shall sanctify my people In 
the sacred vestments which ... 

You shall make a house east of the house of the [l]av[er] according 
to the measurement of [the house of the bas]ln. Its wall shall be at a 
distance of seven cubits from the wall of the house of the laver. Its 
whole building and rafters shall be like (those of) the house of the laver. 
It shall have two gates on the north and the south, one opposite the 
other, according to the measurement of the gates of the house of the 
laver. Inside all the waiis of this house shall have apertures, their width 
(and depth) two cubits each and their height four (?) with which the 
entrails and the feet are raised to the aitar. When they have completed 
the sending up In smoke XXXIV ... They close the wheels and ... and 
tie the horns of the young buiis to the rings and ... by the rings. 
Afterwards they shaii slaughter them and collect [the blood] In bowls 
and toss It around the altar base. They shall open the wheels and strip 
the skin of the young buiis from their flesh and cut them up Into pieces, 
salt the pieces, wash the entrails and the legs, salt them and send 
them up In smoke on the fire which Is on the altar, each young bull with 
Its pieces beside It and the corresponding grain-offering of fine flour 
on It, the wine of the drink-offering beside It and some of it on It. The 
priests, the sons of Aaron, shall send everything up In smoke on the 
altar, an offering by fire, of soothing odour before YHWH. You shall 
make chains hanging from the rafters of the twelve columns XXXV ... 
whoever Is not a priest shall die, and whoever ... [a prle]st who shall 
come ... and he is not clothed In the [holy] vest[ments in which] he was 
ordained, they too shall be put to death and shall not pro[fane the 
san]ctuary of their God, thus Incurring the Iniquity of mortal guilt. You 
shall sanctify tfie environs of the altar, the Temple, the laver and the 

colonnade and they shall be most holy for ever and ever. 

You shall make a place west of the Temple, a colonnade of pillars 
standing around for the sin-offerlngs and the guilt-offierings, divided 
from one another, the sin-offerings of the priests, the he-goats, and the 
sin-offerlngs of the people and their gullt-offerlngs. None of these shall 
be mingled one with another, for their places shall be divided from one 
another In order that the priests may not err concerning all the sin- 
offerlngs of the people, and all the rams (?) of the gullt-offerlngs, (thus) 
Incurring the sin of guilt. 

The birds for ttie altar: tie shall prepare turtledoves XXXVI ... from 
the corner of ... [to the corne]r of the gat[e, one hundred and twenty 
cubits.] The gate (shall be) forty [cubits] wide. Each side shall be 
[according to this measurement. The wid]th of [its wa]ll shall be seven 
cubits, [and] its [height forty]-five [cubits to the raft]ers of [its] roof. The 
width of its ch[ambers] (shall be) twenty-six cubits from corner to 
corner. The gates of entrance and exit: the gate shall be fourteen 
cubits wide and [tw]enty-eight cubits high from the threshold to the 
lintel. The height of the rafters above the lintel shall be fourteen cubits. 
(The gate shall be) roofed with a panelling of cedar wood overlaid with 
pure gold. Its doors shall be overlaid with fine gold. 

From the corner of the gate to the second angle of the courtyard, 
(there shall be) one hundred and twenty cubits. Thus shall be the 
measurement of all these gates of the inner courtyard. The gates shall 
lead inside into the courtyard. XXXVII You shall make [in]side the 
court[yard] seats for the priests, and tables in front of the seats, in the 
inner colonnade by the outer wall of the courtyard, places made for the 
priests and their sacrifices, for the firstfruits and the tithes, for their 
peace-offering sacrifices which they shall sacrifice. The sacrifices of 
the peace-offerings of the children of Israel stiall not be mingled with 
the sacrifices of the priests. 

In the four corners of the courtyard you shall make for them a place 
for cooking-stoves where they shall seethe their sacrifices [and] sin- 
offerings. XXXVIII ... There tfiey shall eat ... the bird, tfie turtle-dove and 
the young pigeons ... 

You shall make a second [co]urtyard aro[u]nd [the in]ner [courtyard], 
one hundred cubits wide, and four hundred and eighty cubits long on 

the east side, atxJ thus shall be the width and length of all its sides: to 
the south, to the west and to the north. Its wall shall be [fo]ur cubits wide 
and twenty-eight cubits high. Chambers shall be made in the wall 
outside and between each chamber there shall be three-[and-a-half 
cubits] XXXIX ... that all the congregation of the children of Israel may 
bow down before me ... No woman shall come there, nor a child until 
the day that he has fulfilled the mle ... [and has paid for] himself [a 
ransom] to YHWH, half a shekel, an eternal mle, a memorial wherever 
they dwell. The shekel (consists of) twenty gerahs. 

When they shall collect from him the half-shekel... to me. Afterwards 
they shall enter from the age of twenty ... The na[mes of the g]ates of 
this [co]urtyard sha[ll b]e according to the nam[es of| the children of 
ls[ra]el: Simeon, Levi and Judah in the east; Reuben, Joseph and 
Benjamin in the south; Issachar, Zebulun and Gad in the west; Dan, 
Naphtali and Asher in the north. Between each gate the measurement 
(shall be); from the north-eastern corner to the gate of Simeon, ninety- 
nine cubits, and the gate twenty-eight cubits. From this gate of Simeon 
to the gate of Levi, ninety-nine cubits, and the gate, twenty-eight cubits. 
From the gate of Levi to the gate of Judah XL ... You shall make a third 
courtyard ... to their daughters and to the strangers who [were] born ... 
[wi]de around the middle courtyard ... in length about one thousand six 
[hundred] cubits from one corner to the next. Each side shall be 
according to this measurement: on the east, the south, the west and 
the no[rt]h. The wall shall be seven cubits wide and forty-nine cubits 
high. Chambers shall be made between its gates along the foundation 
as far up as its 'crowns' (= crenellations; Yadin). There shall be three 
gates in the east, three in the south, three in the west and three in the 
north. The gates shall be fifty cubits wide and their height seventy 
cubits. Between one gate and another there shaii be three hundred 
and sixty cubits. From the corner to the gate of Simeon, three hundred 
and sixty cubits. From the gate of Simeon to the gate of Levi, likewise. 
From the gate of Levi to the gate of Judah, iikewise three [hundred 
and] sixty (cubits). XLI ... From the gate of Issachar [to the gate of 
Zebulun, three] hundred [and sixty] cubits. From the gate of Zebulun to 
the gate of Gad, three hundred and sixty cubits. From the ga[te of] Gad 
to the northern comer, three hundred and sixty cubits. From this corner 

to the gate of Dan: three hundred and sixty cubits. Thus from the gate 
of Dan to the gate of Naphtali, three hundred and sixty cubits. From the 
gate of Naphtali to the gate of Asher, three hundred and sixty cubits. 
From the gate of Asher to the eastern comer, three hundred and sixty 
cubits. The gates shall jut outwards from the wall of the courtyard seven 
cubits, and extend inwards from the wall to the courtyard thirty-six 
cubits. The entrance of the gate shall be fourteen cubits wide and 
twenty-eight cubits high up to the iintei. The rafters at the doorways (?) 
shaii be of cedar wood and overlaid with gold. The doors shall be 
overlaid with pure gold. Between each gate inwards you shaii mal<e 
storehouses, XLII [rooms and colonnades.] 

The room shall be ten cubits wide, twenty cubits long, and fourteen] 
cubits high ... with cedar wood. The waii shaii be two cubits wide. On 
the outside there shaii be storehouses. [The storehouse shaii be ten 
cubits wide and] twenty cubits [long]. The wall shaii be two cubits wide 
[and fourteen cubits high] up to the iintei. its entrance shaii be three 
cubits wide. [You shaii mal<e in this way] aii the storehouses and the 
[corresponding] rooms. The colon[nade] ... shaii be ten cubits [wi]de. 
Between each gate [you shaii mal<e eightjeen storehouses arxl the 
corresponding eight[een] rooms ... 

You shaii mal<e a staircase next to the walls of the gates towards the 
colonnade. Winding stairs shaii go up to the second and third 
colonnades and to the roof You shall build storehouses and 
corresponding rooms and colonnades as on the ground floor The 
second and the third (levels) shaii follow the measurement of the lower 
one. On the roof of the third you shall make pillars roofed with rafters 
from one pillar to the next (providing) a place for tabernacles. The 
(pillars) shall be eight cubits high and the tabernacles shall be made 
on their (roof) each year at the feast of the Tabernacles for the eiders 
of the congregation, for the princes, the heads of the fathers' houses of 
the children of Israel, the captains of the thousands, the captains of the 
hundreds, who will ascend and dwell there until the sacrificing of the 
holocaust on the festival which Is the feast of the Tabernacles, each 
year Between each gate there shaii be XLIII ... on the days of the 
firstfruits of the corn, of the w[ine (tirosh) and the oil, and at the festival 
of the offering of] wood. On these days (tfie tithe) shall be eaten. They 

shall not put aside anything from it from one year to another. For they 
shall eat it in this manner. From ttie feast of ttie Firstfruits of the com of 
wheat they stiall eat the com until the next year, until the feast of the 
Firstfruits, and (they shall drinl<) the wine from the day of ttie festival of 
Wine until the next year, until the day of the festival of the Wine, and 
(they shall eat) the oil from its festival, until the next year, until the 
festival, the day of offering the new oil on tfie altar. Whatever is left (to 
last beyond) their festivals shall be sanctified by being burnt with fire. It 
shall rK> longer be eaten for it is holy. Those wtK> live within a distance 
of three days' walk from the sanctuary shall bring wtiatever they can 
bring. If they cannot carry It, they shall sell it for money and buy with It 
corn, wine, oil, cattle and sheep, and sliall eat them on the days of the 
festivals. On working days they shall not eat from this In their weariness 
for It Is holy. On the holy days it stiall be eaten, but it shall not be eaten 
on working days. XLIV ... 

You shall allot [the rooms and the corresponding chambers. From 
the gate of Slmeo]n to the gate of Judah shall be for the priests ... All 
that is to the right and to the left of the gate of Levi, you shall allo[t] to 
Aaron, your brother, one hundred and eight rooms and corresponding 
chambers and two tabernacles which are on the roof. (You shall allot) 
to the sons of Judah (the area) from the gate of Judah to the corner: 
fifty-four rooms and corresponding chambers and the tabernacle that 
is over them. (You shall allot) to the sons of Simeon (the area) from the 
gate of Simeon to the second corner: their rooms, the corresponding 
chambers and tabernacles. (You shall allot) to the sons of Reuben (the 
area) from the corner which is beside the sons of Judah to the gate of 
Reuben: fifty-two rooms and the corresponding chambers and 
tabernacles. (The area) from the gate of Reuben to the gate of Joseph 
(you shall allot) to the sons of Joseph, to Ephraim and Manasseh. (The 
area) from the gate of Joseph to the gate of Benjamin (you shall allot) 
to the sons of Kohath from the Levites. (The area) from the gate of 
Benjamin to the western corner (you shall allot) to the sons of 
Benjamin. (The area) from this corner to the gate of Issachar (you shall 
allot) to the sons of Issachar. (The area) from the gate (of Issachar) 
XLV... the second (= incoming) [priestly course] shall enter on the left 
... and the first (= outgoing) shall leave on the right. They shall not 

mingle with one anotlier nor tlieir vesseis. [Eacli] priestiy course sliaii 
come to its place and they shall stay there. One shall arrive and the 
other leave on the eighth day They shall clean the rooms, one after the 
other, when the first (priestly course) leaves. There shall be no mingling 

No man who has had a nocturnal emission shall enter the sanctuary 
at all until three days have elapsed. He shall wash his garments and 
bathe on the first day and on the third day he shall wash his garments 
and bathe, and after sunset he shall enter the sanctuary. They shall not 
enter my sanctuary in their impure uncleanness and render it unclean. 
No man who has had sexual intercourse with his wife shall enter 
anywhere into the city of the sanctuary where I cause my name to 
abide, for three days. No blind man shall enter it in ail his days and 
shall not profane the city where i abide, for i, YHWH, abide amongst 
the children of Israel for ever and ever. 

Whoever is to purify himself of his flux shall count seven days for his 
purification. He shall wash his garments on the seventh day and bathe 
his whole body in running water. Afterwards he shall enter the city of 
the sanctuary. No one unclean through contact with a corpse shall enter 
there until he has purified himself. No leper nor any man smitten (in his 
body) shall enter there until he has purified himself and has offered ... 
XLVI ... [No] unclean bird shall fly over [my] sanctua[ry] ... the roofs of 
the gates ... the outer courtyard ... be in my sanctuary for ever and ever 
ail the time that i [abide] among them. 

You shall make a terrace round about, outside the outer courtyard, 
fourteen cubits wide like the entrances of all the gates. You shall make 
twelve steps (leading) to it by which the children of Israel shall ascend 
there to enter my sanctuary. 

You shall make a one-hundred-cubits-wide ditch around the 
sanctuary which shall divide the holy sanctuary from the city so that no 
one can rush into my sanctuary and defile it. They shall sanctify my 
sanctuary and hold it in awe because i abide among them. 

You shall make for them latrines outside the city where they shall go 
out, north-west of the city. These shall be roofed houses with holes in 
them into which the filth shall go down, it shall be far emugh rxst to be 
visible from the city, (at) three thousand cubits. 

You shall make three areas to the east of the city, divided from one 
another, where the lepers, those suffering from a flux and men who 
have had a (nocturnal) emission XLVII ... 

Their cities [shall be] pure ... for ever. The city which I will sanctify, 
causing my name and [my] sanctuar|y] to abide [In it], stiall be holy and 
pure of all Impurity with which they can become Impure. Whatever Is In 
It shall be pure. Whatever enters it stiall be pure: wine, oil, aii food and 
all moistened (food) shali be clean. No skin of clean animals 
slaughtered in their cities shall be brought there (to the city of the 
sanctuary). But in their cities they may use them for any work they 
need. But they shall not bring them to the city of my sanctuary, for the 
purity of the skin corresponds to that of the flesh. You shall not profane 
the city where I cause my name and my sanctuary to abide. For It Is In 
the skins (of animals) slaughtered In the sanctuary that they shall bring 
their wine and oil and all their food to the city of my sanctuary. They 
shall not pollute my sanctuary with the skins of animals slaughtered In 
their country which are tainted (= unfit for the Temple). You cannot 
render any city among your cities as pure as my city, for the purity of 
the skin of the animal corresponds to the purity of Its flesh. If you 
slaughter It In my sanctuary, It shall be pure for my sanctuary, but If you 
slaughter It In your cities, It shall be pure (only) for your cities. Whatever 
Is pure for the sanctuary, shall be brought In skins (fit) for the sanctuary, 
and you shall not profane my sanctuary and my city where I abide with 
tainted skins. 

XLVIII ... [the cormorant, the stork, every kl]nd of [heron,] the 
hoop[oe and the bat] ... 

You may eat [the following] flying [insects]: every kind of great locust, 
every kind of long-headed locust, every kind of green locust, and every 
kind of desert locust. These are among the flying Insects which you 
may eat: those which walk on four legs and have legs jointed above 
their feet to leap with them on the ground and wings to fly with. You 
shall not eat the carcass of any bird or beast but may sell It to a 
foreigner You shall not eat any abominable thing, for you are a holy 
people to YHWH, your God. 

You are the sons of YHWH, your God. You shall not gash yourselves 
or shave your forelocks in mouming for the dead, nor shall you tattoo 

yourselves, for you are a holy people to YHWH, your God. You shall not 
profane your land. 

You shall not do as the nations do; they bury their dead everywhere, 
they bury them even in their houses. Rather you shall set apart areas in 
the midst of your land where you shall bury your dead. Between four 
cities you shall designate an area for burial. In every city you shall set 
aside areas for those stricken with leprosy, with plague arKi with scab, 
who shall not enter your cities and profane them, and also for those 
who suffer from a flux; and for menstruating women, and women after 
childbirth, so ttiat they may not cause defilement in their midst by their 
impure uncleanness. TTie leper suffering from chronic leprosy or scab, 
who has been pronounced unclean by the priest XLIX ... with cedar 
wood, hyssop and ... your cities with the plague of leprosy and they 
shall be unclean. 

If a man dies in your cities, the house in which the dead man has 
died shall be unclean for seven days. Whatever is in the house and 
whoever enters the house shall be unclean for seven days. Any food on 
which water has been poured shall be unclean, anything moistened 
shall be unclean. Earthenware vessels shall be unclean and whatever 
they contain shall be unclean for every clean man. The open (vessels) 
shall be unclean for every Israelite (with) whatever is moistened in 

On the day when the body is removed from there, they shall cleanse 
the house of all pollution of oil, wine and water moisture. They shall rub 
its (the house's) floor, walls and doors and shall wash with water the 
bolts, doorposts, thresholds and lintels. On the day when the body is 
removed from there, they shall purify the house and all its utensils, 
hand-mills and mortars, all utensils of wood, iron and bronze and all 
utensils capable of purification. Clothes, sacks and skins shall be 
washed. As for the people, whoever has been in the house or has 
entered the house shall bathe in water and shall wash his clothes on 
the first day. On the third day they shall sprinkle purifying water on them 
and shall bathe. They stiall wash their garments and all tfie utensils in 
the house. 

On the seventh day they shall sprinkle (them) a second time. They 
shall bathe, wash their clothes and utensils and shall be clean by the 

evening of (the impurity contracted) from the dead so as to (be fit to) 
touch their pure things. As for a man who has not been rendered 
unciean on account of L ... they have been unclean. No longer ... until 
they have sprinl<led (them) the second [time] on tfie seventh day and 
shall be clean by the evening at sunset. 

Whoever touches tfie bone of a dead person in the fields, or one 
slai n by the sword , or a dead body or the blood of a dead person, or a 
tomb, he shall purify himself according to the rule of this statute. But if 
he does not purify himself according to the statute of this law, he is 
unclean, his uncleanness being still in him. Whoever touches him must 
wash his clothes, bathe and he shall be clean by the evening. 

If a woman is with child and it dies in her womb, as long as it is dead 
in her, she shall be unclean like a tomb. Any house that she enters shall 
be unclean with all its utensils for seven days. Whoever touches it shall 
be unclean till the evening. If anyone enters the house with her, he shall 
be unclean for seven days. He shall wash his clothes and bathe in 
water on the first (day). On the third day he shall sprinkle and wash his 
clothes and bathe. On the seventh day he shall sprinkle a second time 
and wash his clothes and bathe. At sunset he shall be clean. 

As for all the utensils, clothes, skins and all the materials made of 
goat's hair, you shall deal with them according to the statute of this law. 
All earthenware vessels shall be broken for they are unclean and can 
no more be purified ever. 

All creatures that teem on the ground you shall proclaim unclean: the 
weasel, the mouse, every kind of lizard, the wall gecko, the sand 
gecko, the great lizard and the chameleon. Whoever touches them 
dead LI ... [and whatever comjes out of the[m] ... [shall be] unclean [to 
you.] You shall [not] render yourselves unclean by th[em. Whoever 
touches them] dead shall be unclean un[til the] evening. He shall wash 
his clothes and bathe [In water and at] sun[set] he shall be clean. 
Whoever carries any of their bones, their carcass, skin, flesh or claw 
shall wash his clothes and bathe in water. After sunset he shall be 
clean. You shall forewarn the children of Israel about all the impurities. 

They shall not render themselves unclean by those of which I tell you 
on this mountain and they shall not be unclean. 

For I, YHWH, abide among the children of Israel. You sfiall sanctify 

them and they shall be holy. They shall not render themselves 
abominable by anything that I have separated for them as unclean and 
they shall be holy. 

You shall establish judges and officers In all your towns and they 
shall judge the people with just judgement. Tfiey shall not be partial in 
(their) judgement. They shall not accept bribes, nor shall they twist 
judgement, for the bribe twists judgement, overturns the works of 
justice, blinds the eyes of the wise, produces great guilt, and profanes 
the house by the iniquity of sin. Justice and justice alone shall you 
pursue that you may live and come to inherit the land that I give you to 
inherit for all days. The man who accepts bribes and twists just 
judgement shall be put to death. You shall not be afraid to execute him. 

You shall not do in your land as the nations do. Everywhere they 
sacrifice, plant sacred trees, erect sacred pillars and set up carved 
stones to bow down before them and build for them Lll ... You shall not 
plant [any tree as a sacred tree beside my altar to be made by you.] 
You shall not erect a sacred pillar [that is hateful to me.] You shall not 
make anywhere in your land a carved stone to bow down before it. You 
shall not sacrifice to me any cattle or sheep with a grave blemish, for 
they are abominable to me. You shall not sacrifice to me any cattle or 
sheep or goat that is pregnant, for this would be an abomination to me. 
You shall not slaughter a cow or a ewe and its young on the same day 
neither shall you kill a mother with her young. 

Of all the firstlings born to your cattle or sheep, you shall sanctify for 
me the male animals. You shall not use the firstling of your cattle for 
work, nor shall you shear the firstling of your small cattle. You shall eat it 
before me every year in the place that I shall choose. Should it be 
blemished, being lame or blind or (afTicted with) any grave blemish, 
you shall not sacrifice it to me. It is within your towns that you shall eat 
it. The unclean and the clean among you together (may eat it) like a 
gazelle or a deer. It is the blood alone that you shall not eat. You shall 
spill it on the ground like water and cover it with dust. You shall not 
muzzle an ox while it is threshing. You shall not plough with an ox and 
an ass (harnessed) together. You shall not slaughter clean cattle or 
sheep or goat in any of your towns, within a distance of three days' 
journey from my sanctuary. It is rather in my sanctuary that you shall 

slaughter it, making of it a tiolocaust or peace-offering. You shall eat 
and rejoice before me in the place on which I clxjose to set my name. 
Every clean animal with a blemish, you shall eat It within your towns, 
away from my sanctuary at a distance of thirty stadia. You stiall not 
slaughter It close to my sanctuaryfor Its flesh Is tainted. You stiall not 
eat in my city, which I sanctify by placing my name in it, ttie flesh of 
cattle, slieep or goat which has not entered my sanctuary. They shall 
sacrifice It there, toss its blood to the base of the altar of holocaust and 
shall bum its fat. Llll [Wtien I extend your frontiers as I have told you, 
and If ttie place where I have chosen to set my name is too dlstan]t, 
and you say 'I will eat meat', because you [l]ong for it, [whatever you 
desire,] you may eat, [and you may slau]gh[ter] any of your small cattle 
or cattle which I give you according to my blessing. You may eat It 
within your towns, the clean and the unclean together, iil<e gazelle or 
deer (meat). But you shaii firmly abstain from eating the blood. You 
shall spill it on the ground iil<e water and cover it with dust. For the 
blood Is the life and you shaii not eat the life with the flesh so that it may 
be well with you and with your sons after you for ever. You shall do that 
which is correct and good before me, for I am YHWH, your God. 

But all your devoted gifts and votive donaflons you shall bring when 
you come to the place where i cause my name to abide, and you shall 
sacrifice (them) there before me as you have devoted and vowed them 
with your mouth. When you make a vow, you shall not tarry in fulfilling It, 
for surely I will require It of you and you shall become guilty of a sin. You 
shall keep the word uttered by your lips, for your mouth has vowed 
freely to perform your vow. 

When a man makes a vow to me or swears an oath to take upon 
himself a binding obllgafion, he must not break his word. Whatever has 
been uttered by his mouth, he shall do It. 

When a woman makes a vow to me, or takes upon herself a binding 
obligation by means of an oath in her father's house, in her youth, if her 
father hears of her vow or the binding obllgafion which she has taken 
upon herself and remains silent, all her vows shall stand, and her 
binding obllgafion which she has taken upon herself shall stand. If, 
however, her father definitely forbids her on the day that he hears of It, 
none of tier vows or binding obligations which she has taken upon 

herself shall statxl, and I will absolve her because (her father) has 
forbidden her LIV [when he] h[eard of them. But if he annuls them after] 
the da[ythathe has] hea[rd of them, he shall bear] herguiit: [her] fa[ther 
has annulled them. Any vow] or binding oath (made by a woman) [to 
mortify herself,] her husbarxl may cx5nfi[nn it] or annul it on the day that 
he hears of it, and I will absolve her. 

But any vow of a widow or a divorced woman, whatever she has 
tal<en upon herself shall stand in conformity with all that her mouth has 

Everything that I command you today, see to it that it is kept. You 
shall not add to it, nor detract from it. 

If a prophet or a dreamer appears among you and presents you with 
a sign or a portent, even if the signer the portent comes true, when he 
says, 'Let us go and worship other gods whom you have not known!', 
do not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer, for I am 
testing you to discover whether you love YHWH, the God of your 
fathers, with all your heart and soul. It is YHWH, your God, that you must 
follow and serve, and it is him that you must fear and his voice that you 
must obey and you must hold fast to him. That prophet or dreamer 
shall be put to death for he has preached rebellion against YHWH, your 
God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you from 
the house of bondage, to lead you astray from the path that I have 
commanded you to follow. You shall rid yourself of this evil. 

If your brother, the son of your father or the son of your mother, or 
your son, or your daughter, or the wife of your bosom, or your friend 
who is like your own self, (seeks to) entice you secretly, saying, 'Let us 
go and worship other gods whom you have not known', neither you, LV 
[nor] your [fa]thers, some of the gods [of the peoples that are round 
about you, whether near you or far off from you], from the one end of 
the earth to [the other, you shall not yield to him or listen to him, nor 
shall your eye pity] him, nor shall you spare [him, nor shall you conceal 
him; but you shall kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him 
to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. You shall stone him 
to death with stones because he sought to] draw you away [from me 
who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 
And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and never again do such an evil 

thing] among you. If in on[e of your cities in wfiich I] give you to dw[ell] 
you fiearthis said: 'Men, [s]ons of [Beii]ai liave arisen in your midst and 
have led astray aii the inhabitants of their city saying, "Let us go and 
worship gods whom you have not knownl",' you shaii irKiuire, search 
and investigate carefully. If tfie matter is proven true that such an 
abomination has been done in Israel, you shall surely put all the 
inhabitants of that city to the sword. You shall place it and all who are in 
it under the ban, and you shall put the beasts to the sword. You shall 
assemble all the booty In (the city) square and shall bum it with fire, the 
city and all the booty, as a whole-offering to YHWH, your God. It shall 
be a mln for ever and shall never be rebuilt. Nothing from that which 
has been placed under the ban shall cleave to your hand so that I may 
turn from my hot anger and show you compassion. I will be 
compassionate to you and multiply you as I told your fathers, provided 
that you obey my voice, keeping all my commandments that I 
command you today, to do that which is correct and good before 
YHWH, your God. 

If among you, in one of your towns that I give you, there is found a 
man or a woman who does that which is wrong in my eyes by 
transgressing my covenant, and goes and worships other gods, and 
bows down before them, or before the sun or the moon, or all the host 
of heaven, if you are told about it, and you hear about this matter, you 
shall search and investigate it carefully. If the matter is proven true that 
such an abomination has been done in Israel, you shall lead out that 
man or that woman and stone him (to death) with stones. 

LVI... [You shall go to the Levitical priests o]r to the 0]u[dges then in 
office]; you shall seek their guidance and [they] shall pro[nounce on] the 
matter for which [you have sought their guidance, and they shall 
procl]aim the(lr) judgement to you. You shall act in conformity with the 
law that they proclaim to you and the saying that they declare to you 
from the book of the Law. They shall issue to you a proclamation in 
truth from the place where I choose to cause my name to abide. Be 
careful to do all that they teach you and act in conformity with the 
decision that they communicate to you. Do not stray from the law which 
they proclaim to you to the right or to the left. The man who does not 
listen but acts arrogantly wittxjut obeying the priest who is posted there 

to minister before me, or the judge, that man stiall die. You shall rid 
israei of evii. All the people shall hear of it and shall be awe-stricl<en, 
and none shall ever again be arrogant in israei. 

When you enter the land which I give you, tai<e possession of it, 
dwell in it and say, 'I will appoint a king over me as do all the nations 
around me!', you may surely appoint over you the l<ing wtxjm I will 
choose. It is from among your brothers that you shall appoint a l<ing 
over you. You shall not appoint over you a foreigner who is not your 
brother. He (the king) shall definitely not acquire many horses, neither 
shall he lead the people back to Egypt for war to acquire many horses 
and much silver arxl gold, for I told you, 'You shall never again go back 
that way. He shall not acquire many wives that they may not turn his 
heart away from me. He shall not acquire very much silver and gold. 

When he sits on the throne of his kingdom, they shall write for him 
this law from the book which is before the priests. LVII This is the law 
[that they shall write for him] ... [They shall count,] on the day that they 
appoint hi[m] king, the sons of Israel from the age of twenty to sixty 
years according to their standard (units). He shall install at their head 
captains of thousands, captains of hundreds, captains of fifties and 
captains of tens in all their cities. He shall select from among them one 
thousand by tribe to be with him: twelve thousand warriors who shall 
not leave him alone to be captured by the nations. All the selected men 
whom he has selected shall be men of truth, God-fearers, haters of 
unjust gain and mighty warriors. They shall be with him always, day and 
night. They shall guard him from anything sinful, and from any foreign 
nation in order not to be captured by them. The twelve princes of his 
people shall be with him, and twelve from among the priests, and from 
among the Levites twelve. They shall sit together with him to (proclaim) 
judgement and the law so that his heart shall not be lifted above them, 
and he shall do nothing without them concerning any affair. 

He shall not marry as wife any daughter of the nations, but shall take 
a wife for himself from his father's house, from his father's family He 
shall not take another wife in addition to her, for she alone shall be with 
him all the time of her life. But if she dies, he may marry another from 
his father's house, from his family He shall not twist judgement; he 
shall take no bribe to twist a just judgement and shall not covet a field 

or a vineyard, any riches or house, or anything desirable in Israel. IHe 
shall (not) rob LVIII ... 

When the l<ing liears of any nation or people intent on plundering 
whatever belongs to Israel, he shall serKi for the captains of thousands 
and the captains of hundreds posted In the cities of Israel. They shall 
send with him (the captain) one tenth of thie people to go with him (the 
l<ing) to war against their enemies, and they stiall go with him. But if a 
large force enters tfie land of Israel, they stiall send with him one fiflh of 
the warriors. If a king with chariots arxJ horses arxJ a large force 
(comes), they shall send with him one third of the warriors, and the two 
(remaining) divisions shall guard their city and their boundaries so that 
no marauders invade their land. If the war presses him (the king) hard, 
they shall send to him half of the people, the men of the army, but the 
(other) half of the people shall not be severed from their cities. 

If they triumph over their enemies, smash them, put them to the 
sword and carry away their booty, they shall give the king his tithe of 
this, the priests one thousandth and the Levites one hundredth from 
everything. They shall halve the rest between the combatants and their 
brothers whom they have left in their cities. 

If he (the king) goes to war against his enemies, one fifth of the 
people shall go with him, the warriors, all the mighty men of valour. 
They shall avoid everything unclean, everything shameful, every iniquity 
and guilt. He shall not go until he has presented himself before the 
High Priest who shall Inquire on his behalf for a decision by the Urim 
and Tummim. It is at his word that he shall go and at his word that he 
shall come, he and all the children of Israel who are with him. He shall 
not go following his heart's counsel until he (the High Priest) has 
inquired for a decision by the Urim and Tummim. He shall (then) 
succeed In all his ways on which he has set out according to the 
decision which LIX ... and they shall disperse them In many lands and 
they shall become a h[orror], a byword, a mockery. With a heavy yoke 
and In extreme want, they shall there serve gods made by human 
hands, of wood and stone, silver and gold. During this time their cities 
shall become a devastation, a laughing-stock and a wasteland, and 
their enemies shall devastate them. They shall sigh In the lands of their 
enemies and scream because of tfie heavy yoke. They shall cry out but 

I will not listen; they shall scream but I will not answer them because of 
their evil doings. I will hide my face from them and they shall become 
food, plunder and prey None shall save them because of their 
wickedness, because they have broken my covenant and their soul 
has loathed my law until they have incurred every guilt. Afterwards they 
will return to me with all their heart and all their soul, in conformity with 
all the words of this law, and I will save them from the hand of their 
enemies and redeem them from the hand of those wfio hate them, and 
I will bring them to the land of their fathers. I will redeem them, and 
Increase them and exult over them. I will be their God and they shall be 
my people. 

The king wtxjse heart and eyes have gone astray from my 
commandments shall never have one to sit on the throne of his fathers, 
for I will cut off his posterity for ever so that it shall no more rule over 
Israel. But if he walk after my rules and keep my commandments and 
do that which is correct and good before me, no heir to the throne of 
the kingdom of Israel shall be cut off from among his sons for ever. I will 
be with him and will save him from the hand of those who hate him and 
from the hand of those who seek his life. I will place all his enemies 
before him and he shaii rule over them according to his pleasure and 
they shall not rule over him. I will set him on an upward, not on a 
downward, course, to be the head and not the tail, that the days of his 
kingdom may be lengthened greatly for him and his sons after him. 

LX ... and aii their wave-offerings. All their firstling male [bea]sts and 
all ... of their beasts and aii their holy gifts which they shaii sanctify to 
me together with all their holy gifts of praise and a proportion of their 
offering of birds, wild animals and ftsh, one thousandth of their catch, 
and all that they shall devote, and the proportion of the booty and the 

To the Levites shall belong the tithe of the corn, the wine and the oil 
that they have sanctified to me first; the shoulder from those who 
slaughter a sacrifice and a proportion of the booty, the plunder and the 
catch of birds, wild animals and fish, one hundredth; the tithe from the 
young pigeons and from the honey one fiftieth. To the priests shall 
belong one hundredth of the young pigeons, for I have chosen them 
from all your tribes to attend on me and minister (before me) and bless 

my name, he and his sons always. If a Levite come from any town 
anywhere in Israel where he sojoums to the place where I will choose 
to cause my name to abide, (if he come) with an eager soul, he may 
minister like his brethren ttie Levites who atterxl on me ttiere. He shall 
have the same share of food with them, besides the inheritance from 
his father's family. 

When you enter the land which I give you, do not learn to practise the 
abominations of those nations. There shall be found among you none 
who makes his son or daughter pass through fire, nor an augur or a 
soothsayer, a diviner or a sorcerer, one wtxs casts spells or a medium, 
or wizards or necromancers. For they are an abomination before me, 
all wtK> practise such things, and it is because of these abominations 
that I drive them out before you. You shall be perfect towards YHWH, 
your God. For these nations that LXI ... to ut[ter a word] in [my] n[ame 
which I have n]ot comman[ded him to] utter, or wh[o speaks in the 
name of othjer go[ds], that prophet shall be put to death. If you say in 
your heart, 'How shall we know the word which YHWH has not 
uttered?', when the word uttered by the prophet in the name of YHWH 
is not fulfilled and does not come true, that is not a word that I have 
uttered. The prophet has spoken arrogantly; do not fear him. 

A single witness may not come forward against a man in the matter 
of any iniquity or sin which he has committed. It is on the evidence of 
two witnesses or three witnesses that a case can be established. If a 
malicious witness comes forward against a man to testify against him 
in a case of a crime, both disputants shall stand before me and before 
the priests and the Levites and before the judges then in office, and the 
judges shall inquire, and If the witness is a false witness who has 
testified falsely against his brother, you shall do to him as he proposed 
to do to his brother. You shall rid yourselves of evil. The rest shall hear 
of It and shall be awe-stricken and never again shall such a thing be 
done in your midst. You shall have no mercy on him: life for life, eye for 
eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot. 

When you go to war against your enemies, and you see horses and 
chariots and an army greater than yours, be not afraid of them, for I am 
with you who brought you out of the land of Egypt. When you approach 
the battle, the priest stiall come fonward to speak to ttie amny and say 

to them, 'Hear, Israel, you approach ... ' ... LXII [and another man shall 
use Its fruit. IT any man has betrothed a woman but has not yet married 
her, he shall return] home. Otherwise he may die In the war and 
another man may take her. [The] of[flcers shall continue] to address the 
army and say, 'If any man Is afraid and has lost heart, he shall go and 
return. Otherwise he may render his kinsmen as faint-hearted as 

When the judges have finished addressing the army, they shall 
appoint army captains at the head of the people. 

When you approach a city to fight it, (first) offer It peace. If it seeks 
peace and opens (its gates) to you, then all the people found in it shall 
become your forced labourers and shall serve you. If It does not make 
peace with you, but is ready to fight a war against you, you shall 
besiege It and I will deliver it Into your hands. You shall put all its males 
to the sword, but the women, the children, the beasts and all that Is in 
the city, all its booty, you may take as spoil for yourselves. You may 
enjoy the use of the booty of your enemies which I give you. Thus shall 
you treat the very distant cities, those which are not among the cities of 
these nations. But In the cities of the peoples which I give you as an 
inheritance, you shall not leave alive any creature. Indeed you shall 
utterly exterminate the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the 
Hivites, the Jebusites, the Girgashites and the Perizzites as I have 
commanded you, that they may not teach you to practise all the 
abominations that they have performed to their gods. 

LXIII ... [a heifer with which] he has not worked, which [has not drawn 
the yoke. The elders of] that city [shall bring down] the heifer to a ravine 
with an ever-flowing stream which has never been sown or cultivated, 
and there they shall break its neck. 

The priests, the sons of Levi, shall come forward, for I have chosen 
them to minister before me and bless my name, and every dispute and 
every assault shall be decided by their word. All the elders of the city 
nearest to the body of the murdered man shall wash their hands over 
the head of the heifer whose neck has been broken in the ravine. They 
shall declare, 'Our hands did not shed this blood, nor did our eyes see 
it happen. Accept expiation for thy people Israel whom thou hast 
redeemed, O YHWH, and do not permit the guilt of innocent blood to 

rest among thy people, Israel. Let this blood be expiated for them.' You 
shall rid Israel (of the guilt) of innocent blood, and you shall do that 
which is correct and good before YHWH, your God. When you go to 
war against your enemies, and I deliver them into your hands, arxJ you 
capture some of them, if you see among the captives a pretty woman 
and desire her, you may take her to be your wife. You shall bring her to 
your house, you shall shave her head, and cut her nails. You shall 
discard the clothes of her captivity and she shall dwell in your house, 
and bewail her father and mother for a full month. Aften/vards you may 
go to her, consummate the marriage with her and she will be your wife. 
But she shall not touch whatever is pure for you for seven years, neither 
shall she eat of the sacrifice of peace-offering until seven years have 
elapsed. Afterwards she may eat. LXIV ... [the firstfruits of his virility 
he has the right of the first-born.] 

If a man has a disobedient and rebellious son who refuses to listen 
to his father and mother, nor listens to them when they chastise him, 
his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him to the elders 
of his city, to the gate of his place. They shall say to the elders of his 
town, 'This son of ours is disobedient and rebellious; he does not listen 
to us; he is a glutton and a drunkard.' All the men of his city shall stone 
him with stones and he shall die, and you shall rid yourselves of evil. All 
the children of Israel shall hear of it and be awe-stricken. If a man 
slanders his people and delivers his people to a foreign nation and 
does evil to his people, you shall hang him on a tree and he shall die. 
On the testimony of two witnesses and on the testimony of three 
witnesses he shall be put to death and they shall hang him on the tree. 
If a man is guilty of a capital crime and flees (abroad) to the nations, 
and curses his people, the children of Israel, you shall hang him also on 
the tree, and he shall die. But his body shall not stay overnight on the 
tree. Indeed you shall bury him on the same day For he who is hanged 
on the tree is accursed of God and men. You shall not pollute the 
ground which I give you to inherit. If you see your kinsman's ox or 
sheep or donkey straying, do not neglect them; you shall indeed return 
them to your kinsman. If your kinsman does not live near you, and you 
do not know who he is, you shall bring the animal to your house and it 
shall be with you until he claims (it). LXV ... 

[Wh]en a bird's nest happens to lie before you by tlie roadside, on 
any tree or on the ground, with fledglings or eggs, and the hen is sitting 
on the fledglings or the eggs, you sliall not tal<e the hen with the young. 
You shall surely let the hen escape and take only the young so ttiat it 
may be weii with you and your days shaii be prolonged. When you buiid 
a new house, you shall construct a parapet on ttie roof so that you do 
not bring biood-guiit on your house if anyone should fall from it. 

When a man takes a wife, has sexual intercourse with her and takes 
a dislike to her, and brings a baseless charge against her, ruining her 
reputation, and says, 'i have taken ttiis woman, approached her, and 
did not find the proof of virginity in her', the father or ttie mottier of the 
giri shall take the girl's proof of virginity and bring it to ttie elders at the 
gate. The girl's father shaii say to the eiders, 'i gave my daughter to be 
this man's wife; he has taken a dislike to her and has brought a 
baseless charge against her saying, "I have not found the proof of 
virginity in your daughter." Here is the proof of my daughter's virginity' 
They shaii spread out the garment before the eiders of that city The 
eiders of that city shaii take that man and chastise him. They shaii fine 
him one hundred pieces of silver which they shall give to the father of 
the giri, because he (the husband) has tried to ruin the reputation of an 
Israelite virgin. He shall not LXVI ... [When a virgin betrothed to a man 
is found by another man In the city and he lies with her, they shaii bring 
both of them to the gate] of that city and stone them with stones and 
they shaii be put to death: the giri because she has not shouted (for 
help, although she was) In the city and the man because he has 
dishonoured his neighbour's wife. You shaii rid yourselves of evil. If the 
man has found the woman in the fields In a distant place hidden from 
the city and raped her, only he who has lain with her shall be put to 
death. To the giri they shall do nothing since she has committed no 
crime worthy of death. For this affair is like that of a man who attacks 
his neighbour and murders him. For it was in the fields that he found 
her and the betrothed giri shouted (for help), but none came to her 

When a man seduces a virgin who is not betrothed, but is suitable to 
him according to the rule, and lies with her, and he is found out, he who 
has lain with her shall give the girl's father fifty pieces of silver and she 

shall be his wife. Because he has dishonoured her, he may tx>t divorce 
her all his days. A man shall not take his father's wife and shall not lift 
his father's skirt. A man shall not take the wife of his brother and shall 
not lift the skirt of his brother, the son of his fether or the son of his 
mother, for this is unclean. A man shall not take his sister, the daughter 
of his father or the daughter of his mother, for this Is abominable. A 
man shall not take his father's sister or his mother's sister, for this Is 
Immoral. A man shall not take the daughter of his brother or the 
daughter of his sister for this is abominable. (A man) shall rK>t take 
LXVII ... 

MMT (Miqsat Ma'ase Ha- Torah) - Some 
Observances of the Law 


Mutilated fragments of six Cave 4 manuscripts have acquired 
international notoriety on account of a lawsuit filed before the 
Jerusalem district court which found that one of the official editors of 
this text, Elisha Qimron, owned the copyright of the MMT text as 
reconstructed by him. Hershel Shanks, of the Biblical Archaeology 
Society of Washington, was held responsible for breaching this 
copyright and ordered to pay $43,000 damages. However, an appeal 
having been lodged with the Israeli Supreme Court, the matter is still 

When the contents of the six copies are assembled into a single 
account, they amount to 120 lines mostly of a fragmentary nature. The 
document begins with a sectarian calendar (section A), which may or 
may not pertain to the original MMT; it continues with a series of 
special rules (section B), and ends with an exhortation (section C). 
MMT has been called an epistie, but since it lacks the introductory and 
concluding formulae of a letter, it is more likely to be a kind of legal 
tractate. It is addressed to a single leading personality who is 
compared to King David. The dramatis personae consist of a 'we' 
party, a 'you' party, and a 'they party. The group responsible for MMT, 
who refer to themselves as 'we', seek to detach the leader of the 'you' 
party from the erroneous views propounded by the 'they party. The 
editors claim that MMT was written by the Teacher of Righteousness 
and sent to the Wicked Priest; ttiat the views of the 'we' party are akin 
to those of the Sadducees; and that the 'they party are the Pharisees. 
IHowever, these are no more than hypotheses. In particular, the 
identification of the author with the Teacher of Righteousness is less 
likely than that of the leader of ttie 'you' group with the man who was to 

become the Wicked Priest, probabiy Jonathan Maccabaeus. 

It has also been advanced that the original nucleus of the Qumran 
Community, responsible for MMT, consisted of eariy or proto- 
Sadducees. However, one should bear In mind that the priests in this 

writing are never called sons of Zadol< or Sadducees, but are referred 
to as sons of Aaron (of 4QS'' (=4Q256) and 405^^ (4Q258) above, p. 
118). The alleged Sadducee connection relies on three legal rules, out 
of a list of more than twenty, In MMT which represent opinions identical 
with the halakhah attributed in rabbinic literature to the Sadducees, 
and contrasted with the stance taken by the Pharisees (cf mParah 5:4 
and MMT B 13-17; mYad 4:7; mToh 8:9 and MMT B 55-8; mYad 4:6 
and MMT B 72-4). 

The chief topics of controversy are (I) the calendar (if it is an integral 
part of the document); (2) ritual purity (acceptability of Gentile offerings, 
law on slaughter, the 'red heifer' ritual, exclusion of the blind and the 
deaf law relating to lepers, purity of running liquids, fourth-year fruit 
and tithe of cattle, ban on dogs in Jerusalem, the law regulating contact 
with dead bodies); (3) marriage and intermarriage rules, and (4) 
decrees regulating entry into the congregation. MMT is particulariy 
important as a source of ancient legal debate. It is unique among the 
Dead Sea Scrolls and foreshadows the halakhic process developed 
and practised by later rabbis. 

Instead of presenting a composite text, the translation will reflect 
actual manuscripts and follow their line numbering. If there are 
overlapping fragments, gaps In the main manuscript will be filled from 
the parallel text and the borrowing will appear between {}. However, to 
assist the reader who desires to consult the Qimron-Strugnell edition, 
the line numbers of their composite text are given in brackets. Unlike 
the editors, I have been economical with purely conjectural restorations 
of the many gaps. Obscurities in the translation therefore faithfully 
reflect the real status of the Hebrew original. 

For the editio princeps, see E. Qimron and J. Strugnell, Qumran 
Cave 4, V(DJD, X, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1994). 



(The fragmentary calendar is presented in five parallel columns which 
originally covered eighteen lines. Hence the end of the calendar at the 
top of 4Q394 3-7 i is listed as lines 19 to 21 by Qimron-Strugnell. 
Whether this calendar is part of the original MMT or is merely copied 
on the same scroll is uncertain.) 

I [On the sixteenth of it (of the second month); sabbath.] 

On the twenty-third of it: sabbath. 

[On] the thir[tie]th [of it: sabbath. 

On the seventh of the third month: sabbath. 

On the fourteenth of it: sabbath. 

On the fifteenth of it: Feast of Weeks. 

On the twenty-] II [f|irs[t] of it: sabbath. 

[On] the twenty-eighth of it: sabbath. 

The first of the sabbath (=Sunday), and the secon[d da]y (=Monday) 

[and the third are to be added. 

And the season is complete: ninety-one days. 

The first of the fourth month: Memorial day. 

On the fourth] III of it: [sabbath.] 

On the eleventh] of it: sabbath. 

On the eighteenth of it: sabbath. 

On the twenty-fifth of it: sabbath. 

On the second of the fifl[h] (month): [sa]bb[ath. 

On the third of it: Feast of Wine, first of sabbath (Sunday).] 

IV [On the ninth of it: sabbath.] 

On the sixteenth of it: sabbath. 

On the twenty-third of it: sabbath. 

[On the th]irtieth [of it: sabbath. 

On the seventh of the sixth (month): sabbath. 

On the fourteenth of it: sabbath. 

On the twenty-first] V of it: sabbatli. 

On the twenty-second of it: Feast of Oil, fir[st of sabjbath (Sunday). 
Af[ten/vards]: offering of Wood]. 

403943-71 i 

(19) [The (twenty)-eighth of it (of the twelfth month)]: sabbath. 

The first [of the] s[abbath (=Sunday) and the second day (=Monday) 
and the third are to be ad]ded to it. (20) And the year Is complete: 
three-hundred and si[xty-four] (21) days, vacat 


(4Q394 3-7 i conflated with 4Q395) 

(I) These are some of our teachings [ ] which are [ (2) the] works which 
w[e think and a]il of them concern [] (3) and the purity of... 

[And concerning the offering of the wh]eat of the [Gentiles which they 
...](4) and they touch It ... and de[fiie it ... One should not accept 
anything] (5) from the wtieat [of the Gen]tiies [and none of It is] to enter 
the Sanctuary. 

[And concerning] {the sacrifice} (4Q395) ... (6) which they cook in a 
vessel ... {in it} (4Q395) (7) the meat of their sacrifices and that they ... 
in the courtyar[d ...] {it} (4Q395) (8) with the broth of their sacrifice. 

And concerning the sacrifice of the Gentiles ... [we consider that] 
they {sacrifice} (4Q395) (9) to [an idol and] that is [like] a woman 
fornicating with him. 

... (the sacrifice} (4Q395) (10) of peace-off[erings] which they 
postpone from one day to the next. But [it is written (cf Lev. 7:15)] (II) 
that the meai-offe[ring] (is eaten} (4Q395) with the fat and the meat on 
the day of [their] being sacrifi[ced. For the sons] (12) of the priest[s] 
{are to take care of this matter} (4Q395) so as not to (13) burden the 

people with sin. 

{And concerning the purity of the heifer of the sin-offering) (4Q395), 
(14) he who slaughters it and he who burns it and he who collects {its 
ashes and he who sprinkles the} (4Q395) [water] (15) of purification - 
all these {are to be pure} (4Q395) at sunset (16) so that the pure shall 
sprinkle the impure. For the sons 

(4Q394 3-7 ii conflated with 4Q395) 

(17) {of Aaron are to be} (4Q395) ... 

And furthermore (18) [conceming the sk]ins of the cattle [and the 
sheep ... from] (19) their [skin]s vessel[s ... [they are not to (20) bring] 
them to the Sanctuary ... 

(4Q397 1-2 conflated with 4Q398 1-3) 

(21) ... 

And furthermore concerning the skin[s and bones of unclean 
animals, they shall not make from their bones] and from their s[k]i(ns] 

(22) handles of v[essels and] ... 

And furthermore [concerning the sjkin of the carcass (23) of a clean 
[animal], he who carries their carcass shall not touch the [sacred] 

(24) And concerning ... (25) ... 

(4Q394 3-7 ii conflated with 4Q397 3) 

[the sons of] (26) the pri[es]ts are to [be care]f[ul] regarding {all these 
matters} (4Q397 3) so as not (27) to burden the people with sin. 

[And concerning that which is written, [If a man slaughters in the 
camp or (28) slaughters] outside the camp an ox or a lamb or a goat 
(Lev. 7:13) for ... {on the northern side of the camp} (4Q397 3). (29) 
And we consider the Sanctuary [as the tent of meeting and 

Je]rusale[m] as (30) the {camp and out[side] the] (4Q397 3) camp [i.e. 
outside Jerusalem], that is the camp (31) of their towns. Outside the 
camp ... they bring out the ashes [(32) of the] aitar and they burn ... For 
Jerusalem] is the piace which (33) [He has chosen] {from aii the tri[bes 
of Israel]} (4Q397 3) ... 

(4Q396 1-2 i conflated with 4Q394 8 iii and 4Q397 5) 

(35) ... they [do no]t slaughter in the Sanctuary. 

(36) [And concerning pregnant animals] {we consider} (4Q397 5) 
[that one should not sacrifice] the mother and the unborn young on the 
same day. 

(37) [And concerning eating, w]e consider that the unborn young (38) 
may be eaten ... (provided it has been slaughtered) ... [this is] so and 
the saying is written concerning a pregnant animal, vacat 

(39) [And concerning the Ammon]{ite and the Moabite} (4Q394 8 iii) 
and the {bastard} (4Q397 5) [and the man whose testicles] have been 
crushed [and one] whose penis [has been cut off] who enter (40) the 
congregation, [... and] they [ta]ke [wives so as to be] {one} (4Q397 5) 
bone (with them) ... (41)... 

(4Q394 8 iii conflated witli 4Q396 1-2 i-ii and 4Q397 5) 
(42) {impurities. 

And furthermore we consider} (4Q397 5) (43) [that they should not ... 
and should not have intercour]se with them. (44) [... and tfiey should] 
{not unite with them} (4Q397 5) so as to make them (45) [into one 
bone (46) ... that some of the people ... (47) ... (48) {from all} (4Q397 5) 
(sexual) mingling (49) ... {and to be fearful of the Sanctuary} (4Q396 1- 

(4Q396 1-2 11) 

[And furthermore concerning] {the blind} (4Q394 8 iv) (50) who do not 
see how to beware of all minglpngs] 

(4Q394 8 iv conflated with 4Q396 1-2 ii and 4Q397 6-13) 

(51) and do not see the minglings which entail guilt (offering). (52) And 
furthermore concerning the deaf wfo have not heard the decrees and 
judgements and purity (rules) and have not (53) heard the judgements 
of Israel - for he who has not seen and has not heard (them) does not 

(54) know how to practise (them); yet ttiey come to the pure food of the 
Sanctuary, vacat 

(55) And furtfiermore conceming the pouring (of liquids), we say ttiat it 
contains no (56) purity. 

And furtfiermore the pouring does not separate ttie impure (57) 
{from the pure} (4Q397 6-13) for the poured liquid and that in the 
receptacle are alike, (58) one liquid. 

And {dogs} (4Q397 6-13) are not to be brought to the sacred camp 
for (59) they may eat some of the bones from the Sanctua[ry] to which 
meat is still attached. For (60) Jerusalem is {the sacred camp} (4Q397 
6-13) and is the place 

(4Q396 1-2 iii conflated with 4Q394 8 iv and 4Q397 6-13) 

(61) which He has chosen from all the tribes of Israel, for Jerusalem is 
the head (62) of the camps of Israel. 

And furthermore con[ceming the pljanting of fruit trees planted (63) 
in the land of Israel, they are like {firstfruits} (4Q397 6-13) destined for 
the {priests} (4Q397 6-13)- {And the tithe} (4Q394 8 iv) of the cattle 
(64) and sheep is for the priests. 

And furthermore concerning the lepers, we (65) s[ay that they shall 
not cjome (into contact) with the sacred pure food for {they shall be} 
(4Q397 6-1 3) separated (66) ... 

Furthermore it is written tliat from the time he (the leper) has shaved 
and washed, he shall stay outside (67) ... [for seven] days. ArxJ now 
whiie their Impurity Is with them ... [they shall not (68) come Into contact 
w]ith the sacred pure food of the house. And you l<now (69) ... and It is 

conceaied from him, he is to bring (70) {a sin-offering) (4Q397 6-1 3). 

[And concerning the person who does anything with a high hand it is 
wriflten that he is one who despises and reviles (God) (cf. Num. xv, 30- 
31). (71) ... {impurities of leprosy} (4Q397 6-13), they are not to eat 
from the holy things 

(4Q396 1-2 iv conflated with 4Q397 6-13) 

(72) until the sun has set on the eighth day. 

And concerning [the impurities] (73) {of a man, we say that every} 
(4Q397 6-13) bone to which (74) flesh is or [is not] attached is to be 
treated according to the law of the dead or slain, vacat 

(75) And concerning fornication practised byttie people, ttiey should 
be s[ons of] holiness, (76) as it is written, {Israel} (4Q397 6-13) is holy 
(Jer. ii, 3). 

And concerning [his clea]n ani[mal], (77) It Is written that It shall not 
be mated with a different kind. 

And conceming [his clothes], it Is written Uiat they shall [not (78) be 
of mixed] material. 

And he shall not sow his field arx) vlne[yard with two kind]s. (79) For 
they are holy and the sons of Aaron are most h[oly]. (80) And you know 
that some of the priests and [the people mingle] (81) [and they] unite 
and defile the [holy] seed and also (82) their [seed] with whores f[or] ... 

(40397 14-21) 

(4) And conceming ttie wome[n ... vlolen]ce and betrayal ... (5) For in 
these ... [on account ofj the violence arxJ fornication they perish[ed ... ] 
(6) places. 

[And furthermore] it is written [in tine Bool< of Moses that] You shall 
not bring an abominable thing in[to your house (cf. Deut. vii, 26) for] 
(7) an abominabie thing is detestabie. 


(4Q397 14-21 1 followed by 4Q398) 

[And you l<now that] we have separated from the mass of the peo[pie] 
... (8) and from mingling with them in these matters and from being in 
contact with them in these (matters). And you k[now that no] treachery 
or lie or evil (9) is found in our hands for we give for [these] th[e ... 

And furthermore] (10) we [have written] to you (sing.) that you should 
understand {the Book of Moses} (4Q398 14-17 1) and the Book[s of 
the Pr]ophets and Davi[d arxJ all (11) the events] of every age. And in 
{the Book is written} (40398 14-17 1) ... not [for] (12) you {and the days 
ofold} (40398 14-171). 

And furthermore it is written that [you will depari:] from ttie w[a]y and 
that evil will befall you (cf. Deut. xxxi, 29). {And it is written} (40398 14- 

(4Q398 14-17 1) 

(13) And it (14) [shall come to pas]sv\hen all these {things} 
(4.Q39714-21) [/)e]/a// you in the en[d] of days, the blessing (15) and 
the curse, [then you wll call them to mind] and retu[rn to Him wth a]ll 
your heart (16) and ail your soul (Deut. xxx, 1-2) at the end of days. 
(17) [And it is written in the Book] of Moses and in the Boo[ks of the 
Prophet]s that there shall come ... (18) [and the blessings came] 

(4Q398 11-13) 

in the days of Solomon the son of David. And the curses (19) came 
from in the days of Jeroboam the son of Nebat(20) untii Jerusalem 
and Zedekiah king of Judah were exiled that He will b[rin]g them to ... 
And we recognize that some of the blessings and curses which are 
(21 ) written in the B[ook of Mo]ses have come. And this is at the end of 
days when they will come back to Israel (22) for [ever] ... and shall not 
turn back-war [ds]. And the wicked shall act (23) wickedly and ... 

Remember the kings of Israel and understand their works that each 
of them who (24) feared [the To]rah was saved from troubles, and to 
those who were seekers of the Law, (25) their iniquities 

(4Q398 14-17 ii conflated with 4Q399) 

were [par]doned. 

Remember David, that he was a man of piety, and that (26) he was 
also saved from many troubles and pardoned. 

We have also written to you (sing.) concerning (27) some of the 
observances of the Law {miqsat ma'ase ha-Torab), which we think are 
beneficial to you and your people. For [we have noticed] that (28) 
prudence and knowledge of the Law are with you. 

Understand all these (matters) and ask Him to straighten (29) your 
counsel and put you far away from thoughts of evil and the counsel of 
Belial. (30) Consequently you will rejoice at the end of time when you 
discover that some of our sayings are true. (31) And it will be reckoned 
for you as righteousness when you perform what is right and good 
before Him, for your own good (32) and for that of Israel, vacat 

The Wicked and the Holy 


The first fragment of a document from Cave 4(4Q181), which its editor 
has left untitled, describes in a manner similar to Community Rule IV 
the respective destinies of the damned and the chosen. See J. M. 
Allegro and A. A. Anderson, DJD,V, 79-80; cf. J. Strugnell, RQ 7 
(1970), 254-5; J. T. Mi Ilk, JJS 23 (1972), 114-18. 

... for guilt with the congregation of his people, for it has wallowed in 
the sin of the sons of men; (and it was appointed)for great judgements 
and evil diseases in the flesh according to the mighty deeds of God 
and in accordance with their wickedness. In conformity with their 
congregation of uncleanness, (they are to be separated) as a 
community of wickedness until (wickedness) ends. 

In accordance with the mercies of God, according to His goodness 
and wonderful glory. He caused some of the sons of the world to draw 
near (Him) ... to be counted with Him in the com[munity of the 'g]ods' 
as a congregation of holiness in service for eternal life and (sharing) 
the lot of His holy ones ... each man according to his lot which He has 
cast for ... for eternal life ... 

4QHalakhah A 


Twenty-six severely damaged fragments, palaeograptiically dated to 
the late first century BCE, represent extracts from the Pentateuch with 
textual variations and exegetical paraphrases. The main topics are the 
Sabbath, compensation for injuries, firstfruits, the priest's wife, 
forbidden marital unions, etc. 

For the editio phnceps, see E. Larson, M. R. Lehman and L. 
Schiffman, DJD, XXXV, 25-51 . 

Frs. 1-2 

... and to draw water from a cistern ... the drawing ... [No] man shall 
take anything from his place on the Sabbath, [from outside the house 
into it] or from the house outsi[de] ... for him to interpret and read in the 
Book on the [Sabba]th ... 

Frs. 4-7 i 

... [Wh]en m[en] quarrel [and one stri]kes [his fellow with a stone or with 
his fist and the man does not] di[e but keeps] his [be]d, [then if the man 
rises again] and w[alks outside, tie who injur]ed him is not guilty. Only 
[he shall pay for the loss of his time] and for his medical [treatment]. 

[When a man strikes his slave, male or female] with a rod ... (cf. 
Exod. 21:1 8-20). 

Fr. 8 

[When a man strikes his slave, male or female,] in the eye [and 
destroys it, or if he knocks out the tooth of his slave, male or female, he 
shall free] him. He shall pay for the lo[ss of his time and for his medica]l 
treatment [for the sake of his eye or his tooth (cf. Exod. 21:26 
combined with 21:19). When an ox gores a man or] a woman, the ox 
shall be killed and they will stone it [and its flesh shall not be eaten. But 
the owner of the ox will be not guilty. But if the ox has been accustomed 
to gore] in the past, and its owner has been warned but has not kept it 
in, and it has killed [a ma]n or a woman, [the ox shall be stoned and its 
owner also shall be put to death. If a ransom is laid upon him, then the 
man shall give ... (cf Exod. 21 :28-30). 

Fr. 9 

[Let no man eat wheat, wljne or oil unless [the priest has waved] their 
best, the firstfruit of the produce. No man shall delay, for [wine] is the 
firstfruit of the produce, [and] the wheat. The juice ... (cf Exod. 22:28). 
The firstfrults are the leavened loaves which they bring [on the d]ay of 
the [firstfrults.] These are firstfrults: let no man eat new wheat ... until the 
day of the bread of the firstfrults has come ... 

Fr. 16 

... When a woman is given to a priest, stie [may eat] the food of her 
husband. [... One acquired by him for money and one born into his 
house, they] may eat his food. But a whore [and a profaned woman 
may not eat the consecrated food. And] every unfaithful deed which [a 

man] shall commit ... to eat, for It Is an abomination ... owner who is 
without redeemer ... 

Fr. 17 

On cases of incest ... No man shaii tal<e the w[ife of his father so as to 
uncover the sl<irt of his father. No man shaii tal<e] the daughter of his 
brother or the daughter of [his] si[ster]. No man shaii uncover the 
nai<edness of the sister of [his] mo[ther or of his father This is 
wicl<edness. A woman shaii not be given to the brother of] her father or 
to the brother of her mother ... A man shaii rrat uncover the nal<edness 
of ... A man shaii not give his daughter ... 

4QHalakhah B 


Three fragments of a legal documerrt, the first of which partly overlaps 
with various sections of 4Q421, deal with Sabbath regulations. 
For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XXXV, 53-6. 

Fr. li 

I ... [No man shall revise the scro]!! of a book reading Its script on the 
day of [Sabbath] ... But they may read and study it. No man shall make 
plans with his mouth ... [on the day of Sabbath. He shall not taik] about 
any matter relating to work or wealth or ... on the day of Sabbath. He 
shall sp[eak no wojrd apart from speaking holy words as prescribed 
and from pronouncing blessings of God. He may talk about eating and 
drinkpng] ... 

4QTohorot (Purities) A 


This is tlie first of ten Cave 4 manuscripts dealing witli purity matters. 
Ttie text translated represents column I of the document and the first 
word of column II. 4Q274 deals with uncleanness caused by bodily 
fluxes and issues of blood and with the means of its removal. Parts of 
fr 3 are concerned with the uncleanness associated with the juice 
oozing out of fruit. 

For the editio princeps, see J. IVI. Baumgarten, DJD, XXXV, 99- 

Fr. li 

I ... [Let him not] begin to cast his lot. He shall lie on a bed of sorrow 
and sit in a seat of sighs. He shall dwell in isolation with all the unclean, 
and away from (food) purity at a distance of twelve cubits in the wing 
(assigned) to him (?) on the north-west of every dwelling-house 
according to this measure. Every man from among the unclean ... he 
shall bathe in water [on the seven]th d[ay] and wash his clothes, and 
afterwards he may eat. For this is what he said , He shall cry, Unclean, 
unclean (Lev. xiii, 45), as long as [the pla]gue af[fects him]. 

A woman with a seven-day issue of blood shall not touch a man with 
a flux, nor any vessel touched by a man who has a flux, nor anything he 
has lain or sat on. But if she has touched (them), she shall wash her 
garments and bathe, and afterwards she may eat. Above all, she shall 
not mingle (with the pure) [during] her seven days so that she may not 
pollute the c[amp]s of the Ho[ly] of Israel. Neither shall she touch any 
woman with a long-term issue of blood. And the person, either male or 

female, who counts (the seven days: cf. Lev. xv, 13) shall not touch the 
menstruant during her uncleanness. Only when she has purified herself 
[from] her [un]cleanness (may she be touched), for the blood of the 
menstruant Is reckoned as a flux for anyone who touches It. And If he 
has touched [bodily] f[luxor s]emen, h[e shall] be unclean. [And he who 
has toujched a man from among all these unclean persons during the 
seven days of [his] cleanspng] he shall [n]ot eat. If he has become 
unclean because of a corp[se, he shall bathe In wat]er, wash (his 
garments) and afterwards II he may e[at]. 

Fr. 2 i 

... when they sprinkle on him for the first time. He shall bathe and wash 
(his clothes) before [he eats. If it oc]curs for him on the seventh (day) 
on the Sabbath day, he shall not sprinkle on the Sabbath, for [He says: 
Keep] the Sabbath (Deut. v, 12). But he shall not touch anything pure 
until he has repeated it. All that touches semen be it a man or any 
vessel shall be immersed. And the bearer of it [shall immer]se. And the 
garment on which it (the semen) is and the vessel which carries it shall 
be immersed [in wate]r If there is a man in the camp who is unable to 
do this (lacks a spare garment), he shall bath[e and put on an]y 
garment which has not been touched by it (the semen) as long as it 
does not touch his bread (food). He who touches [his bed or] his [sea]t, 
if [his] gar[ment] has not touched it (the semen), [he shall bathe] in 
water But if [his garment has touched it (the bed or the seat)], he shall 
wash it (tfie garment). A man shall wash (his garment) with water for 
(eating) all consecrated food ... 

4Q274 3 i-ii 

I ... God uncovers the pupil of his eye, he shall read ... all their precepts 
... for he wfK) eats ... arxJ he is unclean ... [ifj (the fruit's) juice [has not 

oozed out, he shall eat It in purity, but all those] which have been 
squeezed so that their juice has oozed out, no man should eat them [if] 
an unclean man [has to]uchied them. [And aOso from the greens ... or 
ripe cucumber. Whoever has ... 

II ... and any (vessel) w/hich has a seal ... [shaii be unclean] for a 
cleaner man. Any green [that has no] moisture of dew/ [on it] may be 
eaten. And if It is n[ot eaten, let him put it] Into the midst of the water 
For if a man [w/ere to put it on] the ground, and [water] reached it when 
the rain [descended] on it. If an [unclean man] touches it, [let him not 
eat it] in the field by any means until the period [of his purification] ... 
Any earthen vessel which ... which is in its midst ... the liquid ... 

4QTohorot B^-B' 


These two fragments deal with the biblical law of the 'red heifer', the 
ashes of which were used for the preparation of the 'water for (the 
removal of) uncleanness' necessary for the cleansing of impurity 
resulting from contact with a dead body Relevant extracts from Num. 
xix are freely quoted. The subject is treated also in MMT B 1 3 (4Q394 
frs. 3-7 i, 1 6-20). The script dates to the late first century BCE. 

For Vneeditio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XXXV, 111- 


[And the priest wears the garments] in which he is not ministering in 
the Sanctuary ... renders the garments guilty And he slaughtered [the] 
heifer before Him. He shall carry her blood in a clay vessel which is 
[not broughjt near tlie altar. ArKi with his finger lie shall sprinlde some 
of her blood seven [times towajrds the front of the tent of meeting. And 
he shall cast the cedanwood, [the hyssop and the scarlet ma]terial in 
the midst of her burning. [And he who bums (it)], a man who is clean of 
every corpse uncleanness, [shall wash his clothes and gather] up the 
ashes of the heifer [and shall de]posit them to be kept [by the children 
of Israel for the water for uncleanness, for the removal of sin. And] the 
priest shall put on ... 


The priest shall take the hyssop and ... The man cleansed from 
uncleanness (lasting until) the evening [shall gather the ashes of the 
heifer and give them to] the priest who atones with the blood of the 
heifer ... with [whi]ch they atone with the law of the [red heifer] ... in 
water [and he shall be un]clean until the evening. And he who carries 
the cauldron of the water for uncleanness shall be uncl[ean and shall 
wash himself In water and wash (his clothes)]. And [the] man [shall 
sprinkle] the water for uncleanness on those defiled by uncleanness, 
for a pure priest ... on them, fo[r he shall] atone for the unclean. No 
wanton man shall sprinkle on the unclean ... the water for uncleanness 
and he shall bring him to the water and shall purify him from corpse 
uncleanness.... [The pri]est shall scatter on them the water for 
uncleanness to purify [them] ... for they will indeed be purified and their 
flesh shall be p[ure] and anyone who touches [him] ... his flux ... and 
[his] h[ands] are not drenched in water His [b]ed and [his] dwelli[ng] 
shall be unclean ... they who touch his flux are like one who has 
touched the uncleanness of one who has touched (a corpse); [he will 
be unc]lean until the evening. And he who carries his [cOothes shall 
wash and shall be unclean until the evening. 

4Q Harvesting 


Four fragments of a document have survived in a late Hasmonaean — 
early Herodian script (mid-first century BCE). They deal with matters of 
uncleanness affecting fruits. Only fr 1 is translatable. The phrase 
'liquids of the Congregation' links this fragment to IQS VI, 20, VII, 20. 
For the editio princeps, see J. M. Baumgarten, DJD, XXXV, 1 31 -3. 

Fr. 1 

... bask[et ... And let him no]t gather them ... may not touch the liquids of 
the Congregation, for these [render unclean the] basket and the figs 
[and the pomegranates, if] their ju[ice] oozes out wh[en he squeejzes 
them all and [a man] who has not been brou[ght into the C]ovenant has 
gathered them. And if they press [olives in the olive press], let him not 
pollute them in a[ny manjner by opening them until he pours [them into 
the press].... in purity... 

The Master's Exhortation to the Sons of Dawn 


Eight fragments of a manuscript which, apart from its title, is written in 
a cryptic alphabet, contain an exhortation to a group, designated as 
'sons of dawn' by the 'iVIaster' (maskil), the title of the teacher in 
charge of instruction in the Community (cf Community Rule). The 
phrase, 'sons of dawn' {bene ha-shahar) is possibly attested in the 
Damascus Document XIII, 14 (cf M. Broshi, The Damascus 
Document Reconsidered, Jerusalem, 1992, [35]: 'No member of the 
Covenant shall have any dealings with the sons of dawn except for 
payment'). The earlier reading was 'sons of the Pit' {bene ha-shahat). 
S. Pfann suggests that 'the sons of dawn' (not yet 'sons of light') are 
newcomers to the sect at the earliest stages of their initiation. The 
exhortation recalls the opening pages of the Damascus Document. 
The square script of the title is said to belong to the second half of the 
first century BCE. Parts of frs. 1-2 and 3-4 are large enough to be 

For the editio princeps, see Stephen Pfann and IVI. Kister, DJD, XX, 

4Q298, frs. 1-2 i 

[Wor]d of the IVIaster which he spoke to all the sons of Dawn. Liste[n to 
me a]ll men of heart (=intelligence) and understand my word. [And 
seekejrs of righteousness, h[ea]r my word in all that proceeds from 
[my] lips. Those who [k]now have sear[ch]ed [th]ese (matters) and 
[have] returned [to the path] of life ... 

Frs- 3-4 ii 

... And now listen, [O wise men], and hear, O you with knowledge, hear. 
And men of understanding, ln[crease mighjt, and modesty, you who 
search judgement. [You who] kn[ow the way], increase strength, and 
men of truth, pursu[e righteousness], and you who love kindness, 
increase humility ... appointed time which ... you will understand the 
end of the ages and you will gaze at ancient things to know ... 

4Q Men Who Err 


Three small fragments allude to a group unfaithful to the Covenant (of 
Israel). The allusion to dogs recalls 4QMMT B 58-9. 
For the editio princeps, see T. LIm, DJD, XXXVI, 249-54. 

Fr. 1 

The outcasts (?) who stray and do not practise [the precept], for they 
transgress it [from day] to day from month to mon[th], all that is (in) the 
Covenant of l[srael].... its flesh and they spit ... and he will be angry. 
And the dogs will eat [the bones (coming) from the Temple]. He shall 
exclude the d[og]s from the (Temple) court ... 

Register of Rebukes 


Fragments of two columns of a document contain a list of Community 
members rebuked for offences against the rules. This Is the only scroll 
fragment which reveals the names of individual members: Yohanan 
son of Ar[ ], Hananlah Notos and Hananiah son of Slm[on]. According 
to the editor, Esther Eshel, the rebukes listed here were read out In 
public by the mebaqqer (or Guardian), hence the title given by her, The 
Rebukes Reported by the Overseer. To be more precise. It Is likely 
that the rebukes originated with witnesses of the offence. They 
reported It to the Guardian who was to record the infringement (cf. CD 
IX, 2-4; 1 6-20). The epithet Notos attached to the name of Hananlah 
probably means 'Southerner' In line with a parallel Masada Inscription 
(no. 462: Shim'on bar Notos) according to Y Yadin and J. Naveh, 
Masada I (Jerusalem, 1989), 40. D. Flusser, as quoted by Eshel, 
associates Notos with the Greek nothos (bastard). In col. II, 1 . 8, Eshel, 
following M. BroshI, reads shyr(=sh'r) bsrw(\.e. near kin); R. Elsenman 
and M. Wise have shpk bsrw (emission of his body) and J. M. 
Baumgarten {JJS 45 (1994), 277) swi tefw(the carnal foundation of 

Frs. 1 , 2 i and 3: the text Is too fragmentary for translation. Note the 
significant phrases '[to] recall their transgression', 'men of the 
[Community?]', 'to rebuke' and ['c]amps of the Congregation' and 'they 

For the editio princeps, see E. Eshel, DJD, XXXVI, 474-83. 

Fr. 2 

II ... who ... [wh]o acted wickedly ... the Congregation ... Yohanan son of 
Ar ... [they rebuked because] he was short-tempered ... with him ... the 
iniquity with him and also the spirit of pride was with [him] ... vacat 
They rebuked Hananlah Notes because he ... [to dis]turb the spirit of 
the Communi[ty ... and] also to mingle the ... they rebu[k]ed because 
evil ... was with him and also because he was not ... and also because 
he loved his bodily nature (or: showed preference to his near kin) ... 
[blank] And [they rebuked] Hananlah son of Sim[on] [because he] ... 
and he also loves the goodness ... 

Remonstrances (before Conversion?) 


This small fragment, written in Herodian script, contains reproofs 
addressed in the second person plural to a group of wicked Jews. The 
context is that of a war. It is unlikely to belong to the War Scroll or the 
Book of War as neither of these includes speeches to outsiders. 
According to a conjecture proposed by the editors, the opponents of 
the sect thus criticized are the ruling class of Judaea (Hasmonaeans 
and perhaps also Sadducees), but nothing In the surviving text 
positively supports their cautiously presented surmise. However, the 
second half of the fragment can be Interpreted In a positive sense, in 
which case the scene may be a last-minute mass conversion of 
unfaithful Jews before the final battle. 

For the editio princeps, see Esther Eshel and Menahem Kister, 
DJD, XXXVI, 446-9. 

... time(?) you have commanded not to ... You have been unfaithful to 
His covenant ... [You] said: Let us fight His wars for He has redeemed 
us ... Your [mighty men] shall be humbled. And they did not know that 
He has despised ... you shall show yourselves mighty in war. And you 
have been reckoned ... by His measuring line(?). You shall seek 
righteous judgement and the work ... you shall exalt yourselves. And He 
has chosen t[hem] ... for a cry ... And you will return ... sweet 

B. Hymns and Poems 

'Thanksgiving Scroll', 
The Shrine of the Book, 
Israel Museum, Jerusalem 

The Thanksgiving hlymns 

(IQH, IQ36, 40427-32) 

The Hymns Scroll was published by E. L. Sukenik in 1954-5 (The 
Dead Sea Scrolls of the Hebrew University, Jerusalem). It has 
suffered a good deal of deterioration and the translator has difficulty, 
not only in making sense of the poems, but also in determining where 
one ends and another begins. For a method of restoration of the 
Hymns, see E. Puech, 'Quelques aspects de la restauration du 
Rouleau des Hymnes', JJS 39 (1988), 38-55. He has convincingly 
argued that apart from some fragments, the first three columns of the 
original Hymns Scroll are lost. The missing beginning should be 
followed by the existing columns in the following order: XVII (sheet 1), 
XIII-XVI (sheet 2), l-IV (sheet 3), V-VIII (sheet 4) and IX-XII of the editio 
princeps. Four further columns (XXI-XXIV) may be reconstructed with 
the help of the former col. XVIII and various fragments published by 
Sukenik. Puech tentatively suggests also two further columns (XXV- 
XXVI) made up from other fragments. 

Our presentation of the Hymns Is now rearranged according to 
Puech's thesis and his reconstruction of the poem In col. VI (formerly 
XIV) is also adopted (cf art. cit., 53-4). No translation Is offered for the 
extremely fragmentary cols. XXIV-XXVI, though it should be noted that 
col. XXV includes the beginning of a new poem, 'For the Master A 
s[ong (?)]' from IQH, fr 8. Further fragments, occasionally used to 
improve the reading of IQH, may be found at IQ35 (cf also IQ36 and 
37-40; see DJD, I, 136-43) and 40427-32; for the latter, see Eileen 
Schuller, DJD, XXIX, 69-232. 

The poems contained In the Scroll are similar to the biblical Psalms. 
They are mostly hymns of thanksgiving, individual prayers as opposed 
to those intended for communal worship, expressing a rich variety of 
spiritual and doctrinal detail. But the two fundamental themes running 

through the whole collection are those of salvation and krowledge. The 
sectary thanks God continually for having been saved from the 'lot' of 
the wicked, arKi for his gift of insight into the divine mysteries. He, a 
'creature of clay, has been singled out by his Maker to receive favours 
of which he feels himself unworthy and he alludes again and again to 
his frailty and total dependence on God. Whereas some of the Hymns 
give expression to thoughts and sentiments common to all the 
members of the sect, others, particularly nos. 1,2, and 7-11 , appear to 
refer to the experiences of a teactier abandoned by his friends and 
persecuted by his enemies. Several scholars tend to ascribe the 
authorship of these to the Teacher of Righteousness, and even 
consider that he may be responsible for all the Hymns. But although 
this hypothesis is not impossible, no sure conclusion can yet be 
reached. Nor are we in a position to date any particular composition. 
The most we can say is that the collection as such probably attained its 
final shape during the last pre-Christian century. 

Philo's account of the banquet celebrated by the contemplative 
Essenes, or Therapeutae, on the Feast of Pentecost may indicate the 
use to which the Hymns were put. He reports that when the President 
of the meeting had ended his commentary on the Scriptures, he rose 
and chanted a hymn, either one of his own making or an old one, and 
after him each of his brethren did likewise {The Contemplative Life, § 
80). Similarly it is probable that the psalms of this Scroll were recited 
by the Guardian and newly initiated members at the Feast of the 
Renewal of the Covenant. Hymn 4 (formeriy 21 ) expressly refers to the 
oath of the Covenant, and Hymn 5 (formerly 22) appears to be a poetic 
commentary on the liturgy marking the entry into the Community 
Indeed, the relative poverty of principal themes may be due to the fact 
that all this poetry was intended for a special occasion and its 
inspirational scope was thereby limited. 

Cols. I-III are missing. 

IV (formerly XVII).. 

Hymn I (formerly 23) 

As Thou hast said by the hand of Moses, 
Thou forgivest transgression, iniquity, and sin, 
and pardonest rebellion and unfaithfulness. 

For the bases of the mountains shall melt 
and fire shall consume the deep places of Hell, 
but Thou wilt deliver 

all those that are corrected by Thy judgements, 

that they may serve Thee faithfully 

and that their seed may be before Thee for ever. 

Thou wilt keep Thine oath 

and wilt pardon their transgression; 

Thou wilt cast away all their sins. 

Thou wilt cause them to inherit all the glory of Adam 
and abundance of days. 

Hymn 2 (formerly 24) 

[I give Thee thanks] 

because of the spirits which Thou hast given to me! 

I [will bring forth] a reply of the tongue 

to recount Thy righteous deeds, 

and the forbearance ... 

and the works of Thy mighty right hand, 

and [the pardon] of the sins of the forefathers. 

[I will bow down] and implore Thy mercy 

[on my sins and wicked] deeds, 

and on the perversity of [my heart], 

for I have wallowed in uncleanness, 

and have [turned aside] from the counsel [of Thy truth] 

and I have not laboured ... 

[For] Thine, Thine is righteousness. 

and an everlasting blessing be upon Thy Name! 

[According to] Thy righteousness, 

let [Thy servant] be redeemed 

[and] the wicl<ed be brought to an end. 

For I have understood that [it is Thou 

who dost establish] the path of whomsoever Thou choosest; 

Thou dost hedge him in with [true] discernment 

that he may not sin against Thee, 

and that his humility [may bear fruit] 

through Thy chastisement. 

[Thou dost purify] his heart in [Thy trials]. 

[Preserve] Thy servant, [O God], lest he sin against Thee, 

or stagger aside from any word of Thy will. 

Strengthen the [loins of Thy servant 

that he may] resist the spirits [of falsehood, 

that] he may walk in all that Thou lovest, 

and despise all that Thou loathest, 

[that he may do] that which is good in Thine eyes. 
[Destroy] their [dominion] in my bowels, 
for [within] Thy servant is a spirit of [flesh]. 

Hymn 3 (formerly 25) 

[I thank Thee, O Lord, 

for] Thou didst shed [Thy] Holy Spirit upon Thy Servant 
V (formerly XIII) 

All these things [Thou didst establish in Thy wisdom. 

Thou didst appoint] all Thy works 

before ever creating them: 

the host of Thy spirits 

and the Congregation [of Thy Holy Ones, 

the heavens and all] their hosts 

and the earth and all it brings forth. 

In the seas and deeps ... 

... and an everlasting task; 

for Thou hast established them from before eternity. 

And the work of ... 

and they shall recount Thy glory 

throughout all Thy dominion 

For Thou hast shown them that 

which they had not [seen 

by removing all] ancient things 

and creating new ones, 

by breaking asunder things anciently established, 

and raising up the things of eternity. 

For [Thou art from the beginning] 

and Shalt endure for ages without end. 

And Thou hast [appointed] all these things 

inthe mysteries of Thy wisdom 

to make known Thy glory [to all]. 

[But what is] the spirit of flesh 
that it should understand all this, 
and that it should comprehend 

the great [design of Thy wisdom]? 

What is he that is born of woman 

in the midst of all Thy terrible [works]? 

He is but an edifice of dust, 

and a thing kneaded with water, 

whose beginning [is sinful iniquity], 

and shameful nakedness, 

[and a fount of uncleanness], 

and over whom a spirit of straying rules. 

If he is wicked he shall become [a sign for] ever, 

and a wonder to (every) generation, 

[and an object of horror to all] flesh. 

By Thy goodness alone is man righteous, 

and with Thy many mercies [Thou strengthenest him]. 

Thou wiit adom him with Thy spiendour 

and wilt [cause him to reign amid] many deiights 

with everlasting peace and length of days. 

[For Thou hast spoken], 

and Thou wilt not take back Thy word. 

And I, Thy servant, 

I know by the spirit which Thou hast given to me 
[that Thy wonds are truth], 
and that all Thy works are righteousness, 
and that Thou wi It not take back Thy word 
VI (formerly XIV) 

Hymn 4 (formerly 21) 

[Blessed art Thou,] O Lord 

who hast given understanding 

to the heart of [Thy] servant 

that he may understand all these things 

and resist [the works] of wickedness 

and bless justly all those who choose Thy will, 

[and that he may love all] that Thou lovest 

and loathe all that Thou [hatest]. 

Thou Shalt instruct Thy servant 

... [spi]rits of man 

for Thou hast cast their (lot) according to the spirits 

between good and evil 

to accomplish their task. 

And I know through the understanding 

which comes from Thee, 

that in Thy goodwill towards m[a]n 

[Thou hast] increa[sed his inheritance] in Thy Holy Spirit 

and thus Thou hast drawn me near to understanding of Thee. 

And the closer I approach, 

the more am I filled with zeal 

against all the workers of Iniquity 
and the men of deceit. 

For none of those who approach Thee 

rebels against Thy command, 

nor do any of those who know Thee 

alter Thy words; 

for Thou art righteous, 

and all Thine elect are truth. 

Thou wilt blot out all Injustice and wickedness for ever, 
and Thy righteousness shall be revealed 
before the eyes of all Thy creatures. 

I know through Thy great goodness; 
and with an oath I have undertaken 
never to sin against Thee, 
nor to do anything evil In Thine eyes. 
And thus do I bring Into community 
all the men of my Council. 

I will cause each man to draw near 

In accordance with his understanding, 

and according to the greatness of his Inheritance, 

so will I love him. 

I will not honour an evil man, 

nor consider [the bribes of shame]; 

I will [not] barter Thy truth for riches, 

nor one of Thy precepts for bribes. 

But [I will lo]ve [each ma]n 

according to his sp[eech](?) 

and according as Thou removest him far from Thee, 

so will I hate him; 

and none of those who have turned [from] Thy [Co]venant 
will I bring Into the Council [of Thy] t[ruth]. 

Hymn 5 (formerly 22) 

[I thank] Thee, O Lord, 

as befits the greatness of Thy power 

and the multitude of Thy marvels for ever and ever. 

[Thou art a merciful God] and rich in [favours], 

pardoning those who repent of their sin 

and visiting the iniquity of the wicked. 

[Thou delightest in] the free-will offering [of the righteous] 

but iniquity Thou hatest always. 

Thou hast favoured me. Thy servant, 

with a spirit of knowledge, 

[that I may choose] truth [and goodness] 

and loathe all the ways of iniquity. 

And I have loved Thee freely 

and with all my heart; 

[contemplating the mysteries of] Thy wisdom 

[I have sought Thee]. 

For this is from Thy hand 

and [nothing is done] without [Thy will]. 

VII (formerly XV) 

I have loved Thee freely 

and with all my heart and soul 

I have purified... 

[that I might not] turn aside from any of Thy commands. 

I have clung to the Congregation... 

that I might not be separated from any of Thy laws. 

I know through the understanding which comes from Thee 

that righteousness is not in a hand of flesh, 

[that] man [is not master of] his way 

and that it is not in mortals to direct their step. 

I know that the inclination of every spirit 

[is in Thy hand]; 

Thou didst establish [all] its [ways] before ever creating it, 
and how can any man change Thy words? 

Thou alone didst [create] the just 

and establish him from the womb 

for the time of goodwill, 

that he might hearken to Thy Covenant 

and walk in all (Thy ways), 

and that [Thou mightest show Thyself great] to him 

in the multitude of Thy mercies, 

and enlarge his straitened soul to eternal salvation, 

to perpetual and unfailing peace. 

Thou wilt raise up his glory 

from among flesh. 

But the wicked Thou didst create 

for [the time] of Thy [wrath], 

Thou didst vow them from the womb 

to the Day of IVIassacre, 

for they walk in the way which is not good. 

They have despised [Thy Covenant] 

and their souls have loathed Thy [truth]; 

they have taken no delight in all Thy commandments 

and have chosen that which Thou hatest. 

[For according to the mysteries] of Thy [wisdom]. 
Thou hast ordained them for great chastisements 
before the eyes of all Thy creatures, 
that [for all] eternity 

they may serve as a sign [and a wonder], 
and that [all men] may know Thy glory 
and Thy tremendous power. 

But what is flesh 

that it should understand [these things]? 

And how should [a creature of] dust direct his steps? 

It is Thou who didst shape the spirit 

and establish its work [from the beginning]; 

the way of all the living proceeds from Thee. 

I know that no riches equal Thy truth, 

and [have therefore desired 

to enter the Council of] Thy holiness. 

I know that Thou hast chosen them before all others 

and that they shall serve Thee for ever. 

Thou wilt [take no bribe for the deeds of iniquity], 

nor ransom for the works of wickedness; 

for Thou art a God of truth 

and [wilt destroy] all iniquity [for ever, 

and] no [wickedness] shall exist before Thee. 

VIII (formerly XVI) 

Because I know all these things 

my tongue shall utter a reply. 

Bowing down and [confessing all] my transgressions, 

I will seek [Thy] spirit [of knowledge]; 

cleaving to Thy spirit of [holiness], 

I will hold fast to the truth of Thy Covenant, 

that [I may serve] Thee in truth and wholeness of heart, 

and that I may love [Thy Name]. 

Blessed art Thou, O Lord, 

IVIaker [of all things and mighty in] deeds: 

all things are Thy work! 

Behold, Thou art pleased to favour [Thy servant], 

and hast graced me with Thy spirit of mercy 

and [with the radiance] of Thy glory. 

Thine, Thine is righteousness, 

for it is Thou who hast done all [these things]! 

I know that Thou hast marked the spirit of the just, 

and therefore I have chosen to keep my hands clean 

in accordance with [Thy] will: 

the soul of Thy servant [has loathed] 

every work of iniquity. 

And I know that man is not righteous 

except through Thee, 

and therefore I implore Thee 

by the spirit which Thou hast given [me] 

to perfect Thy [faxADurs] to Thy servant [for ever], 

purifying me by Thy Hoiy Spirit, 

and drawing me near to Thee by Thy grace 

according to the abundance of Thy mercies 

[Grant me] the piace [of Thy ioving-l<indness] 

which [Thou hast] chosen for them that iove Thee 

and i<eep [Thy commandments, 

that they may stand] in Thy presence [for] ever. 

Let no scourge [come] near him 

iest he stagger aside from the iaws of Thy Covenant. 

i [l<now, O Lord, 

that Thou art mercifui] and compassionate, 

[iong]-suffering and [rich] in grace and truth, 

pardoning transgression [and sin]. 

Thou repentest of [evii against them that iove Thee] 

and l<eep [Thy] commandments, 

[that] return to Thee with faith 

and wholeness of heart 

... to serve Thee 

[and to do that which is] good in Thine eyes. 
Reject not the face of Thy servant 

Hymn 6 (formerly I) 

IX (formerly I) 

Thou art long-suffering in Thy judgements 
and righteous in all Thy deeds. 

By Thy wisdom [all things exist from] eternity, 

and before creating them Thou knewest their works 

for ever and ever. 

[Nothing] is done [without Thee] 

and nothing is known unless Thou desire it. 

Thou hast created all the spirits 

[and hast established a statute] and law 

for all their works. 

Thou hast spread the heavens for Thy glory 

and hast [appointed] all [their hosts] 

according to Thy will; 

the mighty winds according to their laws 

before they became angels [of holiness] 

... and eternal spirits In their dominions; 

the heavenly lights to their mysteries, 

the stars to their paths, 

[the clouds] to their tasks, 

the thunderbolts and lightnings to their duty, 

and the perfect treasuries (of snow and hall) 

to their purposes, their mysteries. 

Thou hast created the earth by Thy power 
and the seas and deeps [by Thy might]. 
Thou hast fashioned [all] their [lnhabl]tants 
according to Thy wisdom, 
and hast appointed all that Is In them 
according to Thy will. 

[And] to the spirit of man 

which Thou hast formed In the worid, 

[Thou hast given dominion over the works of Thy hands] 

foreveriasting days and unending generations. 

... In their ages 

Thou hast allotted to them tasks 
during all their generations, 
and judgement In their appointed seasons 
according to the rule [of the two spirits. 
For Thou hast established their ways] 
for ever and ever. 

[and hast ordained from eternity] 

tlieir visitation for reward and chastisements; 

Thou hast aiiotted it to aii their seed 

for eternai generations and everiasting years... 

In the wisdom of Thy l<nowiedge 

Thou didst estabiish their destiny before ever they were. 
Aii things [exist] according to [Thy wiii] 
and without Thee nothing is done. 

These things I i<now 
by the wisdom which comes from Thee, 
for Thou hast unstopped my ears 
to marveiious mysteries. 

And yet i, a shape of ciay 

l<neaded in water, 

a ground of shame 

and a source of poiiution, 

a meiting-potof wicl<edness 

and an edifice of sin, 

a straying and perverted spirit 

of no understanding, 

fearfui of righteous judgements, 

what can i say that is not forel<nown, 

and what can i utter that is not foretoid? 

Aii things are graven before Thee 

on a written Reminder 

for everiasting ages, 

and for the numbered cycies 

of the eternai years 

in aii their seasons; 

they are not hidden or absent from Thee. 

What shaii a man say 
concerning his sin? 

And how shall he plead 

concerning his Iniquities? 

And how shall he reply 

to righteous judgement? 

For Thine, O God of knowledge, 

are all righteous deeds 

and the counsel of truth; 

but to the sons of men Is the work of Iniquity 

and deeds of deceit. 

It Is Thou who hast created breath for the tongue 

and Thou knowest Its words; 

Thou didst establish the fruit of the Hps 

before ever they were. 

Thou dost set words to measure 

and the flow of breath from the Hps to metre. 

Thou bringest forth sounds 

according to their mysteries, 

and the flow of breath from the Hps 

according to Its reckoning, 

that they may tell of Thy glory 

and recount Thy wonders 

In all Thy works of truth 

and [In all Thy] righteous Oudgements]; 

and that Thy Name be praised 

by the mouth of all men, 

and that they may know Thee 

according to their understanding 

and bless Thee for ever. 

By Thy mercies and by Thy great goodness, 

Thou hast strengthened the spirit of man 

In the face of the scourge, 

and hast purified [the erring spirit] 

of a multitude of sins, 

that It may declare Thy marvels 

in the presence of all Thy creatures. 

[I wi II declare to the assembly of the si mple] 

the judgements by which I was scourged, 

and to the sons of men, all Thy wonders 

by which Thou hast shown Thyself mighty [In me 

In the presence of the sons of Adam]. 

Hear, O you wise men, and meditate on knowledge; 

O you fearful, be steadfast! 

Increase In prudence, [O all you simple]; 

O just men, put away Iniquity! 

Hold fast [to the Covenant], 

0 all you perfect of way; 

[O all you afflicted with] misery, 

be patient and despise no righteous judgement! 

[but the foojilsh of heart 

shall not comprehend these things 

X (formerly II) 

Upon my [unclrcumclsed] Hps 

Thou hast laid a reply. 

Thou hast upheld my soul, 

strengthening my loins and restoring my power; 

my foot has stood in the realm of ungodliness. 

1 have been a snare to those who rebel, 
but healing to those of them who repent, 
prudence to the simple, 

and steadfastness to the fearful of heart. 

To traitors Thou hast made of me 

a mockery and scorn, 

but a counsel of truth and understanding 

to the upright of way. 

I have been iniquity for the wicked, 

ill-repute on the lips of the fierce, 

the scoffers have gnashed their teeth. 

I have been a byword to traitors. 

the assembly of the wicked has raged against me; 

they have roared iil<e turbuient seas 

and their towering waves have spat out mud and siime. 

But to the eiect of righteousness 

Thou hast made me a banner, 

and a discerning interpreter of wonderful mysteries, 

to try [those who practise] truth 

and to test those who love correction. 

To the interpreters of error I have been an opponent, 

[but a man of peace] to all those who see true things. 

To all those who seek smooth things 

I have been a spi rit of zeal; 

like the sound of the roaring of many waters 

so have [all] the deceivers thundered against me; 

[all] their thoughts were devilish [schemings]. 

They have cast towards the Pit the life of the man 
whose mouth Thou hast confirmed, 
and into whose heart 

Thou hast put teaching and understanding, 
that he might open a fountain of knowledge 
to all men of insight. 

They have exchanged them for lips of uncircumcision, 

and for the foreign tongue 

of a people without understanding, 

that they might come to ruin in their straying. 

Hymn 7 (formerly 2) 

I thank Thee, O Lord, 
for Thou hast placed my soul 
in the bundle of the living, 
and hast hedged me about 
against all the snares of the Pit. 

Violent men have sought after my life 

because I have clung to Thy Covenant. 

For they, an assembly of deceit, 

and a horde of Belial, 

know not that my stand 

Is maintained by Thee, 

and that In Thy mercy Thou wilt save my soul 

since my steps proceed from Thee. 

From Thee It Is 

that they assail my life, 

that Thou mayest be glorified 

by the judgement of the wicked , 

and manifest Thy might through me 

In the presence of the sons of men; 

for It Is by Thy mercy that I stand. 

And I said, Mighty men 

have pitched their camps against me, 

and have encompassed me 

with all their weapons of war. 

They have let fly arrows 

against which there Is no cure, 

and the flame of (their) javelins 

Is like a consuming fire among trees. 

The clamour of their shouting 

Is like the bellowing of many waters, 

like a storm of destruction 

devouring a multitude of men; 

as their waves rear up, 

Naught and Vanity spout upward to the stars. 

But although my heart melted like water, 

my soul held fast to Thy Covenant, 

and the net which they spread for me 

has taken their own foot; 

they have themselves fallen 

Into the snares which they laid for my life. 

But my foot remains upon level ground; 

apart from their assembly I will bless Thy Name. 

Hymn 8 (formerly 3) 

I thank Thee, O Lond, 

for Thou hast [fastened] Thine eye upon me. 

Thou hast saved me from the zeal 

of lying Interpreters, 

and from the congregation of those 

who seek smooth things. 

Thou hast redeemed the soul of the poor one 

whom they planned to destroy 

by spilling his blood because he served Thee. 

Because [they knew not] 

that my steps were directed by Thee, 

they made me an object of shame and derision 

In the mouth of all the seekers of falsehood. 

But Thou, O my God, hast succoured 

the soul of the poor and the needy 

against one stronger than he; 

Thou hast redeemed my soul 

from the hand of the mighty. 

Thou hast not permitted their Insults to dismay me 

so that I forsook Thy service 

for fear of the wickedness of the [ungodly], 

or bartered my steadfast heart for folly 

Hymn 9(formerly 4) 

XI (formerly III) 

They caused [me] to be 

like a ship on the deeps of the [sea], 

and like a fortified city 

before [the aggressor], 

[and] like a woman in travaii 
Willi her first-born child, 
upon whose belly pangs have come 
and grievous pains, 

filling with anguish her child-bearing crucible. 

For the children have come to the throes of Death, 

and she labours in her pains who bears a man. 

For amid the throes of Death 

she shall bring forth a man-child, 

and amid the pains of Hell 

there shall spring from her child-bearing crucible 

a Marvellous Mighty Counsellor; 

and a man shall be delivered from out of the throes. 

When he is conceived 

all wombs shall quicken, 

and the time of their delivery 

shall be in grievous pains; 

they shall be appalled 

who are with child. 

And when he is brought forth 

every pang shall come upon the child-bearing crucible. 

And they, the conceivers of Vanity, 
shall be prey to terrible anguish; 
the wombs of the Pit 
shall be prey to all the works of horror. 

The foundations of the wall shall rock 

like a ship upon the face of the waters; 

the heavens shall roar 

with a noise of roaring, 

and those who dwell in the dust, 

as well as those who sail the seas, 

shall be appalled by the roaring of the waters. 

All their wise men 

shall be like sailors on the deeps, 

for all their wisdom shall be swallowed up 

In the midst of the howling seas. 

As the Abysses boll 

above the fountains of the waters, 

the towering waves and billows shall rage 

with the voice of their roaring; 

and as they rage, 

[Hell and Abaddon] shall open 

[and all] the flying arrows of the Pit 

shall send out their voice to the Abyss. 

And the gates [of Hell] shall open 
[on all] the works of Vanity; 
and the doors of the Pit shall close 
on the concelvers of wickedness; 
and the everlasting bars shall be bolted 
on all the spirits of Naught. 

Hymn 10 (formerly 5) 

I thank Thee, O Lord, 

for Thou hast redeemed my soul from the Pit, 

and from the hell of Abaddon 

Thou hast raised me up to everlasting height. 

I walk on limitless level ground, 

and I know there Is hope for him 

whom Thou hast shaped from dust 

for the everlasting Council. 

Thou hast cleansed a perverse spirit of great sin 

that It may stand with the host of the Holy Ones, 

and that It may enter Into community 

with the congregation of the Sons of Heaven. 

Thou hast allotted to man an everlasting destiny 
amidst the spirits of knowledge, 
that he may praise Thy Name In a common rejoicing 
and recount Thy marvels before all Thy works. 

And yet I, a creature of clay, 

what am I? 

Kneaded with water, 

what Is my worth and my might? 

For I have stood In the realm of wickedness 

and my lot was with the damned; 

the soul of the poor one was carried away 

In the midst of great tribulation. 

Miseries of torment dogged my steps 

while all the snares of the Pit were opened 

and the lures of wickedness were set up 

and the nets of the damned (were spread) on the waters; 

while all the arrows of the Pit 

flew out without cease, 

and, striking, left no hope; 

while the rope beat down In judgement 

and a destiny of wrath (fell) upon the abandoned 

and a venting of fury upon the cunning. 

It was a time of the wrath of all Belial 

and the bonds of death tightened without any escape. 

The torrents of Belial shall reach 

to all sides of the world. 

In all their channels 

a consuming fire shall destroy 

every tree, green and barren, on their banks; 

unto the end of their courses 

It shall scourge with flames of fire, 

and shall consume the foundations of the earth 

and the expanse of dry land. 

The bases of the mountains shall blaze 

and the roots of the rocks shall turn 
to torrents of pitch; 

It shall devour as far as the great Abyss. 

The torrents of Belial shall break Into Abaddon, 

and the deeps of the Abyss shall groan 

amid the roar of heaving mud. 

The land shall cry out because of the calamity 

fallen upon the world, 

and all its deeps shall howl. 

And all those upon it shall rave 

and shall perish amid the great misfortune. 

For God shall sound His mighty voice, 

and His holy abode shall thunder 

with the truth of His glory. 

The heavenly hosts shall cry out 

and the world's foundations 

shall stagger and sway. 

The war of the heavenly warriors shall scourge the earth; 
and it shall not end before the appointed destruction 
which shall be for ever and without compare. 

I thank Thee, O Lord, 
for Thou art as a fortified wall to me, 
and as an iron bar against all destroyers 
Thou hast set my feet upon rock... 
that I may walk in the way of eternity 
and in the paths which Thou hast chosen 
XII (formerly IV) 

I thank Thee, O Lord, 

for Thou hast 1 llumi ned my face by Thy Covenant, 

Hymn 11 (formerly 


Hymn 12 (formerly 


I seek Thee, 

and sure as the dawn 

Thou appearest as [perfect Light] to me. 

Teachers of lies [have smoothed] Thy peopie [with words], 

and [faise prophets] have led them astray, 

they perish without understanding 

for their works are in folly. 

For I am despised by them 

and they have no esteem for me 

that Thou mayest manifest Thy might through me. 

They have banished me from my land like a bird from its nest; 

all my friends and brethren are driven far from me 

and hold me for a broken vessel. 

And they, teachers of lies and seers of falsehood, 

have schemed against me a devilish scheme, 

to exchange the Law engraved on my heart by Thee 

for the smooth things (which they speak) to Thy people. 

And they withhold from the thirsty the drink of Knowledge, 

and assuage their thirst with vinegar, 

that they may gaze on their straying, 

on their folly concerning their feast-days, 

on their fall into their snares. 

But Thou, O God, 
dost despise all Belial's designs; 
it is Thy purpose that shall be done 
and the design of Thy heart 
that shall be established for ever. 

As for them, they dissemble, 

they plan devilish schemes. 

They seek Thee with a double heart 

and are not confirmed in Thy truth 

A root bearing poisoned and bitter fruit 

is in their designs; 

they walk in stubbornness of heart 
and seek Thee among idols, 
and they set before themselves 
the stumbling-block of their sin. 

They come to inquire of Thee 

from the mouth of lying prophets deceived by error 

who speak [with strange] lips to Thy people, 

and an alien tongue, 

that they may cunni ng ly turn 

all their works to folly. 

For [they hearken] not [to] Thy [voice], 

nor do they give ear to Thy word; 

of the vision of knowledge they say, ' It is unsure' , 

and of the way of Thy heart, ' It is not (the way)' . 

But Thou, O God, wilt reply to them, 

chastising them in Thy might 

because of their idols 

and because of the multitude of their sins, 

that they who have turned aside from Thy Covenant 

may be caught in their own designs. 

Thou wilt destroy in Judgement 

all men of lies, 

and there shall be no more seers of error; 

for in Thy works is no folly, 

no guile in the design of Thy heart. 

But those who please Thee 

shall stand before Thee for ever; 

those who walk in the way of Thy heart 

shall be established for evermore. 

Clinging to Thee, I will stand. 
I will rise against those who despise me 
and my hand shall be turned 
against those who deride me; 

for they have no esteem for me 
[that Thou mayest] manifest Thy might through me. 
Thou hast reveaied Thyseif to me in Thy power 
as perfect Light, 

and Thou hast not covered my face with shame. 
All those who are gathered in Thy Covenant 
inquire of me, 

and they hearken to me who walk in the way of Thy heart, 
who array themselves for Thee 
in the Council of the holy. 

Thou wilt cause their law to endure for ever 

and truth to go forward unhindered, 

and Thou wilt not allow them to be led astray 

by the hand of the damned 

when they plot against them. 

Thou wilt put the fear of them into Thy people 

and (wilt make of them) a hammer 

to all the peoples of the lands, 

that at the Judgement they may cut off 

all those who transgress Thy word. 

Through me Thou hast illumined 

the face of the Congregation 

and hast shown Thine infinite power. 

For Thou hast given me knowledge 

through Thy marvellous mysteries, 

and hast shown Thyself mighty within me 

in the midst of Thy marvellous Council. 

Thou hast done wonders before the Congregation 

for the sake of Thy glory, 

that they may make known Thy mighty deeds to all the living. 

But what is flesh (to be worthy) of this? 

What is a creature of clay 

for such great marvels to be done, 

whereas he is in iniquity from the womb 

and in guiity unfaithfuiness until his oid age? 

Righteousness, I i<now, is not of man, 

nor is perfection of way of the son of man: 

to the iVIost High God beiong aii righteous deeds. 

The way of man is not estabiished 

except by the spirit which God created for him 

to mal<e perfect a way for the children of men, 

that aii His creatures may l<now 

the might of His power, 

and the abundance of His mercies 

towards aii the sons of His grace. 

As for me, shal<ing and trembling seize me 

and all my bones are broken; 

my heart dissolves like wax before fire 

and my knees are like water 

pouring down a steep place. 

For I remember my sins 

and the unfaithfulness of my fathers. 

When the wicked rose against Thy Covenant 

and the damned against Thy word, 

I said in my sinfulness, 

'I am forsaken by Thy Covenant.' 

But calling to mind the might of Thy hand 

and the greatness of Thy compassion, 

I rose and stood, 

and my spirit was established 

in face of the scourge. 

I lean on Thy grace 
and on the multitude of Thy mercies, 
for Thou wilt pardon iniquity, 
and through Thy righteousness 
[Thou wilt purify man] of his sin. 
Not for his sake wilt Thou do it. 

[but for the sake of Thy glory]. 

For Thou hast created the just and the wicked 

XIII (formerly V) 

Hymn 13 (formerly 8) 

I thank Thee, O Lord, 

for Thou hast not abandoned me 

whilst I sojourned among a people [burdened with sin]. 

[Thou hast not] judged me 

according to my guilt, 

nor hast Thou abandoned me 

because of the designs of my Inclination; 

but Thou hast saved my life from the Pit. 

Thou hast brought [Thy servant deliverance] 

In the midst of Hons destined for the guilty, 

and of lionesses which crush the bones of the mighty 

and drink the blood of the brave. 

Thou hast caused me to dwell with the many fishers 

who spread a net upon the face of the waters, 

and with the hunters of the children of Iniquity, 

Thou hast established me there for justice. 

Thou hast confirmed the counsel of truth In my heart 

and the waters of the Covenant for those who seek It. 

Thou hast closed up the mouth of the young Hons 

whose teeth are like a sword, 

and whose great teeth are like a pointed spear, 

like the venom of dragons. 

All their design Is for robbery 

and they have lain In wait; 

but they have not opened their mouth against me. 

For Thou, O God, hast sheltered me 
from the children of men. 

and hast hidden Thy Law [within me] 

against the time when Thou shouidst reveai 

Tiny saivation to me. 

For Thou hast not forsal<en me 

in my soul's distress, 

and Thou hast heard my cry 

in the bitterness of my soui; 

and when I groaned, 

Thou didst consider my sorrowfui compiaint. 
Thou hast preserved the soui of the poor one 
in the den of iions 

which sharpened their tongue iil<e a sword. 
Thou hast ciosed up their teeth, O God, 
iest they rend the soui of the poor and needy. 
Thou hast made their tongue go bacl< 
iil<e a sword to its scabbard 
[iest] the soui of Thy servant [be biotted out]. 

Thou hast deait wondrousiy with the poor one 
to manifest Thy might within me 
in the presence of the sons of men. 

Thou hast piaced him in the meiting-pot, 

[iil<e goid] in the fire, 

and iil<e siiver refined 

in the meiting-pot of the smeiters, 

to be purified seven times. 

The wicl<ed and fierce have stormed against me 

with their afflictions; 

they have pounded my soui aii day. 

But Thou, O my God, 

hast changed the tempest to a breeze; 

Thou hast delivered the soui of the poor one 

iil<e [a bird from the net 

and iil<e] prey from the mouth of iions. 

Hymn 14 (formerly 9) 

I thank Thee (corrected: Blessed art Thou) O Lord, 

for Thou hast not abandoned the fatherless 

or despised the poor. 

For Thy might [is boundless] 

and Thy glory beyond measure 

and wonderful Heroes minister to Thee; 

yet [hast Thou done marvels] among the humble 

in the mire underfoot, 

and among those eager for righteousness, 

causing all the well-loved poor 

to rise up together from the trampling. 

But I have been [iniquity to] those who contend with me, 

dispute and quarrelling to my friends, 

wrath to the members of my Covenant 

and murmuring and protest to all my companions. 

[All who have ea]ten my bread 

have lifted their heel against me, 

and all those joined to my Council 

have mocked me with wicked lips. 

The members of my [Covenant] have rebelled 

and have murmured round about me; 

they have gone as talebearers 

before the children of mischief 

concerning the mystery which Thou hast hidden in me. 

And to show Thy great[ness] through me, 

and because of their guilt. 

Thou hast hidden the fountain of understanding 

and the counsel of truth. 

They consider but the mischief of their heart; 
[with] devilish [schemings] they unsheathe 

a perfidious tongue 

from wliicli ever springs Vne poison of dragons. 

And lil<e (serpents) winich creep in tlie dust, 

so do tliey iet fly [tfieir poisonous darts], 

viper's [venom] against whicfi there is no cfiarm; 

and this has brought incurabie pain, 

a malignant scourge 

within the body of Thy servant, 

causing [his spirit] to faint 

and draining his strength 

so that he maintains no firm stand. 

They have overtal<en me in a narrow pass without escape 

and there is no [rest for me in my triai]. 

They sound my censure upon a harp 

and their murmuring and storming upon a zither. 

Anguish [seizes me] 

iil<e the pangs of a woman in travaii, 

and my heart is troubled within me. 

i am clothed in blackness 

and my tongue cleaves to the roof [of my mouth]; 

[for I fear the mischief of] their heart 

and their inclination (towards evil) 

appears as bitterness before me. 

The light of my face is dimmed to darkness 

and my radiance is turned to decay. 

For Thou, O God, didst widen my heart, 
but they straiten it with affliction 
and hedge me about with darkness. 
I eat the bread of wailing 

and drink unceasing tears; 

truly, my eyes are dimmed by grief, 

and my soul by daily bitterness. 

[Groaning] and sorrow encompass me 

and ignominy covers my face. 

My bread is turned into an adversary 

and my drinl< into an accuser; 

it lias entered into my bones 

causing my spirit to stagger 

and my strengtli to faii. 

According to tlie mysteries of sin, 

ttiey ctiange ttie worl<s of God byttieirtransgression. 

Truly, I am bound witti untearabie ropes 

and witli unbreal<able chains. 

A tliicl< waii [fences me in], 

iron bars and gates [of bronze]; 

my [prison] is counted witti ttie Abyss 

as being wittiout [any escape] 

[Ttie torrents of Beiiai] tiave encompassed my soui 
[leaving me wittiout deliverance] 

Hymn 14 (formerly 10) 

XIV (formerly VI) 

Thou hast unstopped my ears 

[to the correction] of those who reprove with justice 

[Thou hast saved me] from the congregation of [vanity] 

and from the assembly of violence; 

Thou hast brought me into the Council of.. 

[and hast purified me of] sin. 

And I know there is hope 

for those who turn from transgression 

and for those who abandon sin 

and to walk without wickedness 

in the way of Thy heart. 

I am consoled for the roaring of the peoples, 

and for the tumult of k[ing]doms when they assemble; 

[for] in a little while, I know, 

Thou wilt raise up survivors among Thy people 

and a remnant within Thine inheriteince. 

Thou wi It purify and cleanse them of thei r si n 

for all their deeds are in Thy truth. 

Thou wilt judge them in Thy great loving-l<indness 

and in the multitude of Thy mercies 

and in the abundance of Thy pardon, 

teaching them acconding to Thy word; 

and Thou wilt establish them in Thy Council 

according to the uprightness of Thy truth. 

Thou wilt do these things for Thy glory 

and for Thine own sake, 

to [magnify] the Law and [the truth 

and to enlighten] the members of Thy Council 

in the midst of the sons of men, 

that they may recount Thy marvels 

for everlasting generations 

and [meditate] unceasingly upon Thy mighty deeds. 

All the nations shall acknowledge Thy truth, 

and all the people Thy glory. 

For Thou wilt bring Thy glorious [salvation] 
to all the men of Thy Council, 
to those who share a common lot 
with the Angels of the Face. 

And among them shall be no mediator to [invoke Thee], 
and no messenger [to make] reply; 
for ... 

They shall reply according to Thy glorious word 

and shall be Thy princes in the company [of the Angels]. 

They shall send out a bud [for ever] 

like a flower [of the fields], 

and shall cause a shoot to grow 

into the boughs of an everlasting Plant. 

It shall cover the whole [earth] with Its shadow 

[and Its crown] (shall reach) to the [clouds]; 

Its roots (shall go down) to the Abyss 

[and all the rivers of Eden shall water Its branches]. 

A source of light 

shall become an eternal ever-flowing fountain, 
and In Its bright flames 
all the [sons of Iniquity] shall be consumed; 
[It shall be] a fire to devour all sinful men 
In utter destruction. 

They who bore the yoke of my testimony 

have been led astray [by teachers of lies], 

[and have rebelled] against the service of righteousness. 

Whereas Thou, O my God, didst command them 

to mend their ways 

[by walking] In the way of [holiness], 

where no man goes who Is unclrcumclsed 

or unclean or violent, 

they have staggered aside from the way of Thy heart 

and languish In [great] wretchedness. 

A counsel of Belial Is In their heart 

[and In accordance with] their wicked design 

they wallow In sin. 

[I am] as a sailor In a ship 
amid furious seas; 
their waves and all their billows 
roar against me. 

[There Is no] calm In the whirlwind 

that I may restore my soul, 

no path that I may straighten my way 

on the face of the waters. 

The deeps resound to my groaning 

and [my soul has journeyed] to the gates of death. 

But I shall be as one who enters a fortified city, 
as one who seeks refuge behind a high wall 
until deliverance (comes); 

I will [lean on] Thy truth, O my God. 

For Thou wilt set the foundation on rock 

and the framework by the measuring-cord of justice; 

and the tried stones [Thou wilt lay] 

by the plumb-line [of truth], 

to [build] a mighty [wall] which shall not swa^^ 

and no man entering there shall stagger. 

For no enemy shall ever Invade [It 

since Its doors shall be] doors of protection 

through which no man shall pass; 

and Its bars shall be firm 

and no man shall break them. 

No rabble shall enter In with their weapons of war 

until all the [arrows] of the war of wickedness 

have come to an end. 

And then at the time of Judgement 

the Sword of God shall hasten, 

and all the sons of His truth shall awake 

to [overthrow] wickedness; 

all the sons of Iniquity shall be no more. 

The Hero shall bend his bow; 

the fortress shall open on to endless space 

and the everlasting gates shall send out weapons of war. 

They shall be mighty 

from end to end [of the earth 

and there shall be no escape] 

for the guilty of heart [In their battle]; 

they shall be utterly trampled down 

without any [remnant. 

There shall be no] hope 

In the greatness [of their might], 

no refuge for the mighty warriors; 

for [the battle shall be] to the Most High God 

Hoist a banner, 

O you who He In the dust! 

0 bodies gnawed by worms, 

raise up an ensign for [the destruction of wickedness]! 

[The sinful shall] be destroyed 

In the battles against the ungodly. 

The scourging flood when It advances 

shall not Invade the stronghold 

XV (formerly VII) 

As for me, I am dumb ... 

[my arm] Is torn from Its shoulder 

and my foot has sunk Into the mire. 

My eyes are closed by the spectacle of evil, 

and my ears by the crying of blood. 

My heart Is dismayed by the mischievous design, 

for Belial Is manifest In their (evil) Inclination. 

All the foundations of my edifice totter 

and my bones are pulled out of joint; 

my bowels heave like a ship In a violent tempest 

and my heart Is utterly distressed. 

A whirlwind engulfs me 

because of the mischief of thelrsln. 

Hymn 15 (formerly 1 1) 

1 thank Thee, O Lord, 

for Thou hast upheld me by Thy strength. 
Thou hast shed Thy Holy Spirit upon me 
that I may not stumble. 

Thou hast strengthened me 

before the battles of wickedness, 

and during ali their disasters 

Thou hast not permitted that fear 

shouid cause me to desert Thy Covenant. 

Thou hast made me iii<e a strong tower, a high waii, 

and hast established my edifice upon rocl<; 

eternal foundations 

serve for my ground, 

and all my ramparts are a tried wall 

which shall not sway. 

Thou hast placed me, O my God, 

among the branches of the Council of Holiness; 

Thou hast [established my mouth] in Thy Covenant, 

and my tongue is like that of Thy disciples; 

whereas the spirit of disaster is without a mouth 

and all the sons of iniquity without a reply; 

for the lying lips shall be dumb. 

For Thou wilt condemn in Judgement 

all those who assail me, 

distinguishing through me 

between the just and the wicked. 

For Thou knowest the whole intent of a creature, 

Thou discernest every reply, 

and Thou hast established my heart 

[on] Thy teaching and truth, 

directing my steps into the paths of righteousness 

that I may walk before Thee 

in the land [of the living], 

into paths of glory and [infinite] peace 

which shall [never] end. 

For Thou knowest the inclination of Thy servant, 
that I have not relied [upon the works of my hands] 
to raise up [my heart], 
nor have I sought refuge 

in my own strength. 

I have no fleshly refuge, 

[and Thy servant has] no righteous deeds 

to deliver him from the [Pit of no] forgiveness. 

But I lean on the [abundance of Thy mercies] 

and hope [for the greatness] of Thy grace, 

that Thou wilt bring [salvation] to flower 

and the branch to growth, 

providing refuge in (Thy) strength 

[and raising up my heart]. 

[For in] Thy righteousness 

Thou hast appointed me for Thy Covenant, 

and I have clung to Thy truth 

and [gone forward in Thy ways]. 

Thou hast made me a father to the sons of grace, 

and as a foster-father to men of marvel; 

they have opened their mouths like little babes ... 

like a child playing in the lap of its nurse. 

Thou hast lifted my horn above those who insult me, 

and those who attack me 

[sway like the boughs] (of a tree); 

my enemies are like chaff before the wind, 

and my dominion is over the sons [of iniquity, 

For] Thou hast succoured my soul, O my God, 

and hast lifted my horn on high. 

And I shall shine in a seven-fold light 

in [the Council appointed by] Thee for Thy glory; 

for Thou art an everlasting heavenly light to me 

and wilt establish my feet 

[upon level ground for ever]. 

Hymn 16 (formerly 12) 

I [thank Thee, O Lord], 

for Thou hast enlightened me through Thy truth. 

In Thy marvellous mysteries, 

and in Thy loving-kindness to a man [of vanity, 

and] in the greatness of Thy mercy to a perverse heart 

Thou hast granted me l<nowledge. 

Who is like Thee among the gods, O Lord, 

and who is according to Thy truth? 

Who, when he is judged, 

shall be righteous before Thee? 

For no spirit can reply to Thy rebuke 

nor can any withstand Thy wrath. 

Yet Thou bri ngest all the sons of Thy truth 
in forgiveness before Thee, 
[to cleanse] them of their faults 
through Thy great goodness, 
and to establish them before Thee 
through the multitude of Thy mercies 
for ever and ever. 

For Thou art an eternal God; 

all Thy ways are determined for ever [and ever] 

and there is none other beside Thee. 

And what is a man of Naught and Vanity 

that he should understand Thy marvellous mighty deeds? 

Hymn 17 (formerly 13) 

[I thank] Thee, O God, 

for Thou hast not cast my lot 

in the congregation of Vanity, 

nor hast Thou placed {my decree} (4Q428 7) 

in the council of the cunning. 

[Thou hast] called me to Thy grace 

and to [Thy] forgiveness Thou hast brought me. 

and, by the multitude of Thy mercies, 

to aii judgements of [righteousness. 

As for me, I am an] unci[ean ma]n, 

and from the womb of her who conceived me 

I am an unciean man, 

and from the womb of her who has conceived me 
lam in sinful guilt, 

[and from the breast of my mother] in injustice, 
and in the bosom [of my nurse] in great impurity. 
And from my youth (I am) in blo[od, 
and until [my old age inthe iniquity of the flesh. 
ButThou.jOmy God, 

Thou hast established my feet inthe way of Thy heart, 
and hast opened] my ears to [Thy wonderful] tidings, 
and my heart to understand Thy truth 
XVI (formerly VIII) 

for I have closed my ears to Thy teaching 

... [without] knowledge 
hast Thou cut out of me, 
and glor[y] ... 

[no] more for me a stumbling-block of iniquity. 
For Thou dost rev[eal Thy salvation], 
and Thy righteousness is made firm for ever. 
For m[an] is not the master of his way, 
f[or] Thou hast done [all this for Thy glory.] 

Hymn 18 (formerly 14) 

I [thank Thee, O Lord, 

for] Thou hast placed me beside a fountain of streams 

in an arid land, 

and close to a spring of waters 
in a dryland, 

and beside a watered garden 
[in a wilderness]. 

[For Thou didst set] a plantation 

of cypress, pine, and cedar for Thy glory, 

trees of life beside a mysterious fountain 

hidden among the trees by the water, 

and they put out a shoot 

of the everlasting Plant. 

But before they did so, they took root 

and sent out their roots to the watercourse 

that its stem might be open to the living waters 

and be one with the everlasting spring. 

And all [the beasts] of the forest 
fed on its leafy boughs; 

its stem was trodden by all who passed on the way 

and its branches by all the birds. 

And all the [trees] by the water rose above it 

for they grew in their plantation; 

but they sent out no root to the watercourse. 

And the bud of the shoot of holiness 

of the Plant of truth 

was hidden and was not esteemed; 

and being unperceived, 

its mystery was sealed. 

Thou didst hedge in its fruit, [O God], 

with the mystery of mighty Heroes 

and of spirits of holiness 

and of the whirling flame of fire. 

No [man shall approach] the well-spring of life 

or drink the waters of holiness 

with the everlasting trees, 

or bear fruit with [the Plant] of heaven, 

who seeing has not discerned, 

and considering has not believed 

in the fountain of life, 

wlio lias turned [liis liand against] tlie everiasting [bud]. 

And I was despised bytumuituous rivers 
for tliey cast up tlieir siime upon me. 

But Tliou, O my God, liast put into my moutfi 

as it were rain for all [those who thirst] 

and a fount of living waters which shall not fail. 

When they are opened they shall not run dry; 

they shall be a torrent [overflowing its banks] 

and like the [bottom]less seas. 

They shall suddenly gush forth 

which were hidden in secret, 

[and shall be like the waters of the Flood 

to every tree], both the green and the barren; 

to every beast and bird [they shall be an abyss. 

The trees shall sink like] lead in the mighty waters, 

fire [shall burn among them] 

and they shall be dried up; 

but the fruitful Plant 

[by the] everlasting [spring 

shall be] an Eden of glory 

[bearing] fruits [of life]. 

By my hand Thou hast opened for them 
a well-spring and ditches, 
[that all their channels] may be laid out 
according to a certain measuring-cord, 
and the planting of their trees 
according to the plumb-line of the sun, 
that [their boughs may become 
a beautiful] Branch of glory. 

When I lift my hand to dig its ditches 
its roots shall run deep into hardest rock 

and its stem ... in tlie eartli; 

in tlie season of lieat it sliaii l<eep its strengtli. 

But if I tal<e away my liand 

it shall be like a thistle [in the wildemess]; 

its stem shall be like nettles in a salty land, 

and thistles and thoms shall grow from its ditches, 

and brambles and briars. 

Its border [trees] shall be like the wild grapevine 

whose foliage withers before the heat, 

and its stem shall not be open to [the spring]. 

[Behold, I am] carried away with the sick; 

[I am acquainted] with scourges. 

I am forsaken in [my sorrow] ... 

and without any strength. 

For my sore breaks out in bitter pains 

and in incurable sickness impossible to stay, 

[my heart laments] within me 

as in those who go down to Hell. 

My spirit is imprisoned with the dead 

for [my life] has reached the Pit; 

my soul languishes [within me] 

day and night without rest. 

My wound breaks out like burning fire 

shut up in [my bones], 

whose flames devour me for days on end, 

diminishing my strength for times on end 

and destroying my flesh for seasons on end. 

The pains fly out [towards me] 

and my soul within me languishes even to death. 

My strength has gone from my body 

and my heart runs out like water; 

my flesh is dissolved like wax 

and the strength of my loins is turned to fear. 

My arm is torn from its socl<et 
[and I can] lift my liand [no more]; 

My [foot] is held by fetters 

and my knees slide like water; 

I can no longer walk. 

I cannot step fon/vard lightly, 

[for my legs and arms] are bound by shackles 

which cause me to stumble. 

The tongue has gone back which Thou didst make 

marvellously mighty within my mouth; 

it can no longer give voice. 

[I have no word] for my disciples 

to revive the spirit of those who stumble 

and to speak words of support to the weary. 

My circumcised lips are dumb. 

XVII (formerly IX) 

[For] the throes of death [encompass me] 

and Hell is upon my bed; 

my couch utters a lamentation 

[and my pallet] the sound of a complaint. 

My eyes are like fire in the furnace 

and my tears like rivers of water; 

my eyes grow dim with waiting, 

[for my salvation] is far from me 

and my life is apart from me. 

But behold, 

from desolation to ruin, 

and from the pain to the sore, 

and from the travail to the throes, 

my soul meditates on Thy marvellous works. 

In Thy mercies Thou hast not cast me aside; 

season by season, my soul shall delight 

in the abundance of mercy. 

I will reply to him who slanders me 

and I will rebuke my oppressor; 
I will declare his sentence unjust 
and declare Thy judgement righteous. 

For I know by Thy truth, 

and I choose Thy judgement upon me: 

I delight In my scourges 

for I hope for Thy lovlng-klndness. 

Thou hast put a supplication 

I n the mouth of Thy servant 

and Thou hast not threatened my life 

nor rejected my peace. 

Thou hast not failed my expectation, 

but hast upheld my spirit In face of the scourge. 

For It Is Thou who hast founded my spirit 
and Thou knowest my Intent; 
In my distress Thou hast comforted me. 
I delight In forgiveness, 

and am consoled for the former transgression; 

for I know there Is hope In Thy grace 

and expectation In Thy great power. 

For no man can be just In Thy judgement 

or [righteous In] Thy trial. 

Though one man be more just than another, 

one person [more] wise [than another], 

one mortal more glorious 

than another creature [of clay], 

yet Is there no power to compare with Thy might. 

There Is no [bound] to Thy glory, 

and to Thy wisdom, no measure; 

[to Thy truth] there Is no ... 

and all who forsake It ... 

and my oppressor shall [not] prevail against me. 

I will be a stumbling-block to [those who swallow me up, 

and a snare to] all those who battle against me; 

[I will be for my enemies a] cause of shame, 

and a cause of disgrace 

to those who murmur against me. 

For Thou, O my God ... 

Thou wilt plead my cause; 

for It Is according to the mystery of Thy wisdom 

that Thou hast rebuked me. 

Thou wilt conceal the truth until [Its] time, 
[and righteousness] until Its appointed moment. 
Thy rebuke shall become my joy and gladness, 
and my scourges shall turn to [eternal] healing 
and everlasting [peace]. 

The scorn of my enemies shall become a crown of glory, 
and my stumbling (shall change) to everlasting might. 

For In Thy ... 

and my light shall shine forth In Thy glory. 

For as a light from out of the darkness, 

so wilt Thou enlighten me. 

[Thou wilt bring healing to] my wound, 

and marvellous might In place of my stumbling, 

and everlasting space to my straitened soul. 

For Thou art my refuge, my high mountain, 

my stout rock and my fortress; 

In Thee will I shelter 

from all the [designs of ungodliness, 

for Thou wilt succour me] with eternal deliverance. 

For Thou hast known me from (the time of) my father, 

[and hast chosen me] from the womb. 

[From the belly of] my mother 

Thou hast dealt kindly with me, 

and from the breast of her who conceived me 

have Thy mercies been with me. 

[Thy grace was with me] in the lap of her who reared me, 
and from my youth Thou hast iliumined me 
with the wisdom of Thy judgement. 

Thou hast upheld me with certain truth; 

Thou hast delighted me with Thy Holy Spirit 

and [hast opened my heart] till this day. 

Thy just rebuke accompanies my [faults] 

and Thy safeguarding peace delivers my soul. 

The abundance of (Thy) forgiveness is with my steps 

and infinite mercy accompanies Thy judgement of me. 

Until I am old Thou wilt care for me; 

for my father knew me not 

and my mother abandoned me to Thee. 

For Thou art a father 

to all [the sons] of Thy truth, 

and as a woman who tenderly loves her babe, 

so dost Thou rejoice in them; 

and as a foster-father bearing a child in his lap 

so carest Thou for all Thy creatures. 

Hymn 19 (formerly 15) 

[I thank Thee, O Lord] 
XVIII (formerly X) 

... and nothing exists except by Thy will; 
none can consider [Thy deep secrets] 
or contemplate Thy [mysteries]. 

What then is man that is earth, 

that is shaped [from clay] and returns to the dust, 

that Thou shouldst give him to understand such marvels 

and make known to him the counsel of [Thy truth]? 

Clay and dust that I am, 

what can I devise unless Thou wish it, 
and what contrive uniess Thou desire it? 
What strength shaii i have 
uniess Thou l<eep me upright, 
and how shaii i understand 

uniess by (the spirit) which Thou hast shaped for me? 

What can I say uniess Thou open my mouth 

and how can I answer uniess Thou eniighten me? 

Behoid, Thou art Prince of gods 

and King of majesties. 

Lord of aii spirits, 

and Ruier of aii creatures; 

nothing is done without Thee, 

and nothing is i<nown without Thy wiii. 

Beside Thee there is nothing, 
and nothing can compare with Thee in strength; 
in the presence of Thy giory there is nothing, 
and Thy might is without price. 

Who among Thy great and marveiious creatures 

can stand in the presence of Thy giory? 

iHow then can he who returns to his dust? 

ForThygiorys sai<e aione hast Thou made aii these things. 

Hymn 20 (formerly 16) 

Biessed art Thou, O Lord, 

God of mercy [and abundant] grace, 

for Thou hast made i<nown [Thy wisdom to me 

that i shouid recount] Thy marveiious deeds, 

i<eeping siience neither by day nor [by night]! 

[For i have trusted] in Thy grace. 

in Thy great goodness, 

and in [the multitude of Thy mercies] 

For I have leaned on Thy truth 
[And unless] Thou rebuke, 
there Is no stumbling; 
unless Thou foreknow It, 
[there Is no] scourge; 
[nothing Is done without] Thy [will]. 

[I will cling to Thy ways] 

according to my knowledge [of Thy] truth; 

contemplating Thy glory 

I will recount Thy wonderful works, 

and understanding [Thy goodness 

I will lean on the] multitude of Thy mercies 

and hope for Thy forgiveness. 

For Thou Thyself hast shaped [my spirit] 

and established me [according to Thy will]; 

and Thou hast not placed my support In gain, 

[nor does] my [heart delight In riches]; 

Thou hast given me no fleshly refuge. 

The might of warriors [rests] on abundant delights, 

[and on plenty of corn] and wine and oil; 

they pride themselves In possessions and wealth. 

[But the righteous Is like a] green [tree] 

beside streams of water, 

bringing forth leaves and multiplying Its branches; 

for [Thou hast chosen them 

from among the children of] men 

that they may all grow fat from the land. 

Thou wilt give to the children of Thy truth 
[unending joy and] everlasting [gladness], 
and according to the measure of their knowledge, 
so shall they be honoured one more than another. 

And likewise for the son of man ... 

Thou wilt increase liis portion 

in tlie l<nowiedge of Tliy trutli, 

and according to tlie measure of his knowledge, 

so shall he be honoured ... 

[For the soul] of Thy servant has loathed [riches] and gain, 
and he has not [desired] exquisite delights. 
My heart rejoices in Thy Covenant 
and Thy truth delights my soul. 
I shall flower [like the lily] 

and my heart shall be open to the everlasting fountain; 
my support shall be in the might from on high. 

and withers like a flower before [the heat]. 

My heart is stricken with terror, 

and my loins with trembling; 

my groaning goes down to the Abyss, 

and is shut up in the chambers of Hell. 

I am greatly afraid when I hear of Thy judgement 

of the mighty Heroes, 

and of Thy trial of the host 

of Thy Holy Ones 

XIX (formerly XI) 

Hymn 21 (formerly 17) 

I thank Thee, my God, 
for Thou hast dealt wondrously to dust, 
and mightily towards a creature of clay! 
I thank Thee, I thank Thee! 

What am I, that Thou shouldst [teach] me 

the counsel of Thy truth, 

and give me understanding 

of Thy marvellous works; 

that Thou shouldst lay hymns of thanksgiving 

within my mouth 

and [praise] upon my tongue, 

and that of my circumcised lips 

(Tliou sliouidst mal<e) a seat of rejoicing? 

Iwiii sing Thy mercies, 

and on Thy might i will meditate all day long. 

I will bless Thy Name evermore. 

I will declare Thy glory in the midst of the sons of men 

and my soul shall delight InThy great goodness. 

I l<now that Thy word is truth, 

and that righteousness is in Thy hand; 

that all knowledge is in Thy purpose, 

and that all power is in Thy might, 

and that every glory is Thine. 

In Thy wrath are all chastisements, 

but in Thy goodness is much forgiveness 

and Thy mercy is towards the sons of Thy goodwill. 

For Thou hast made known to them 

the counsel of Thy truth, 

and hast taught them Thy marvellous mysteries. 

For the sake of Thy glory 

Thou hast purified man of sin 

that he may be made holy for Thee, 

with no abominable uncleanness 

and no guilty wickedness; 

that he may be one [with] the children of Thy truth 

and partake of the lot of Thy Holy Ones; 

that bodies gnawed by worms may be raised from the dust 

to the counsel [of Thy truth], 

and that the perverse spirit (may be lifted) 

to the understanding [which comes from Thee]; 

that he may stand before Thee 

with the everlasting host 

and with [Thy] spirits [of holiness]. 

to be renewed together with all the living 
and to rejoice together with them that know. 

Hymn 22 (formerly 18) 

I thank Thee, my God! 
I praise Thee, my Rock! 

For Thou hast made known to me the counsel of Thy truth 

[and hast taught me Thy marvellous mysteries;] 

and hast revealed Thy [wonders] to me. 

I have beheld {Thy marvels} (4Q427 fr. 1, 1) [towards the 


of grace, 

and I know [that] righteousness is Thine, 
that in Thy mercies there is [hope for me], 
but without Thy grace [destruction] without end. 
But a fountain of bitter mourning opens for me, 
[and my tears fall down]. 
Distress is not hidden from my eyes 
when I think of the (evil) inclinations of man, 
of his return [to dust], 

{I understand and observe} (4Q427 fr. 1 , iii) sin and the sorrow 
of guilt. 

They enter my heart and reach into my bones 

and to meditate in sorrowful meditation. 

I will groan with the zither of lamentation 

in all grief-stricken mourning and bitter complaint 

until iniquity and [wickedness] are consumed 

and the disease-bringing scourge is no more. 

Then will I play on the zither of deliverance 

and the harp of joy, 

[on the tabors of prayer] and the pipe of praise 
without end. 

Who among all Thy creatures 

is able to recount [Thy wonders]? 

May Thy Name be praised 

by the mouth of aii men! 

May they biess Thee for ever 

in accordance with [their understanding], 

and proclaim Thee with the voice of praise 

in the company of [the Sons of Heaven]! 

There shaii be neither groaning nor complaint 

and wickedness [shall be destroyed for ever]; 

Thy truth shall be revealed in eternal glory 

and everlasting peace. 

Blessed art [Thou, O my Lord], 

who hast given to [Thy servant] 

the knowledge of wisdom 

that he may comprehend Thy wonders, 

and recount Thy ... 

in Thy abundant grace! 

Blessed art Thou, 

O God of mercy and compassion, 

for the might of Thy [power] 

and the greatness of Thy truth, 

and for the multitude of Thy favours 

in all Thy works! 

Rejoice the soul of Thy servant with Thy truth 
and cleanse me by Thy righteousness. 
Even as I have hoped in Thy goodness, 
and waited for Thy grace, 
so hast Thou freed me from my calamities 
in accordance with Thy forgiveness; 
and in my distress Thou hast comforted me 
for I have leaned on Thy mercy. 

Blessed art Thou, O Lord, 

for it is Thou who hast done these things! 

Thou hast set [hymns of praise] 

withi n the mouth of Thy servant, 

and hast established for me a response of the tongue. 

Hymn 23 (formerly 19) 

XX (formerly XII) 

... {with the ever[lastlng] spirits} (4Q427, fr. 3 II, 1 . 4) 

securely In a dwelling {of peac[e,} (4Q427, fr. 2, 1 1 . 1 -2) 

In sll]ence and quietness In the tents of security and salvation. 

I will praise Thy Name among them that fear Thee. 
Bowing down In prayer I will beg Thy favours 
from season to season always: 

when light emerges from [Its dwelling-place], 

and when the day reaches Its appointed end 

In accordance with the laws 

of the Great Light of heaven; 

when evening falls and light departs 

at the beginning of the dominion of darkness, 

at the hour appointed for night, 

and at Its end when morning returns 

and (the shadows) retire to their dwelling-place 

before the approach of light; 


at the genesis of every period 

and at the beginning of every age 

and at the end of every season, 

according to the statute and signs 

appointed to every dominion 

by the certain law from the mouth of God, 

by the precept which Is and shall be 

for ever and ever without end. 

Without It nothing Is nor shall be, 

for the God of knowledge established It 

and there is no other beside Him. 

I, the Master, i<now Thee O my God, 

by the spirit which Thou hast given to me, 

and byThyHoiy Spirit I have faithfuiiy heari<ened 

to Thy marvelious counsel. 

In the mystery of Thy wisdom 

Thou hast opened knowledge to me, 

and in Thy mercies 

[Thou hast unlocked for me] the fountain of Thy might. 

Before Thee no man is just ... 

[that he may] understand all Thy mysteries 

or give answer [to Thy rebuke. 

But the children of Thy grace 

shall delight in] Thy correction 

and watch for Thy goodness, 

for in Thy mercies [Thou wilt show Thyself to them] 

and they shall know Thee; 

at the time of Thy glory 

they shall rejoice. 

[Thou hast caused them to draw near] 

in accordance [with their knowledge], 

and hast admitted them 

in accordance with their understanding, 

and in their divisions they shall serve Thee 

throughout their dominion 

[without ever turning aside] from Thee 

or transgressing Thy word. 

Behold, [I was taken] from dust 
[and] fashioned [out of clay] 
as a source of uncleanness, 
and a shameful nakedness, 
a heap of dust, 
and a kneading [with water,] 
and a house of darkness. 

a creature of clay returning to dust, 

returning [attlie appointed time 

to dweii] in tlie dust wlience it was tal<en. 

Howtlien sliail dust repiyto its iVlal<er, 

[and flow] understand His [worl<s]? 

How sliaii it stand before Him wtio reproves it? 

[and ttie Spring of] Eternity, 


and tlie Fountain of Knowledge. 

Not even [the wonderful] Heroes [can] declare all Thy glory 

or stand in face of Thy wrath, 

and there is none among them 

that can answer Thy rebuke; 

for Thou art just and none can oppose Thee. 

How then can (man) who returns to his dust? 

I hold my peace; 

what more shall I say than this? 

I have spoken in accordance with my knowledge, 

out of the righteousness given to a creature of clay. 

And how shall I speak unless Thou open my mouth; 

how understand unless Thou teach me? 

How shall I seek Thee unless Thou uncover my heart, 

and how follow the way that is straight 

unless [Thou guide me? 

How shall my foot] stay on [the path 

unless Thou] give it strength; 

and how shall I rise... 

XXI (formerly XVIII, 16-33+fr- 3) 

Hymn 24(formerly 25) 

[How] shall I look, 

unless Thou open my eyes? 

Or hear, 

[unless Thou unstop my ears]? 

My heart is astounded, 

for to the unoircumoised ear 

a word has been disclosed, 

and a heart [of stone 

has understood the right precepts]. 

I l<now it is for Thyself 

that Thou hast done these things, O God; 

for what is flesh 

[that Thou shouldst act] marvellously [towards it]? 

It is Thy purpose to do mightily 

and to establish all things for Thy glory. 

[Thou hast created] the host of knowledge 

to declare (Thy) mighty deeds to flesh, 

and the right precepts to him that is born [of woman]. 

Thou hast [caused the perverse heart to enter] 

into a Covenant with Thee, 

and hast uncovered the heart of dust 

that it may be preserved from evil 

and saved from the snares of Judgement 

in accordance with Thy mercies. 

And I, a creature [of clay 
kneaded with water, 
a heap of dust] 
and a heart of stone, 

for what am I reckoned to be worthy of this? 

For into an ear of dust [Thou hast put a new word] 

and hast engraved on a heart of [stone] things everlasting. 

Thou hast caused [the straying spirit] to return 

that it may enter into a Covenant with Thee, 

and stand [before Thee for ever] 

in the everlasting abode, 
iiiumined witli perfect Liglit for ever, 
with [no more] darl<ness, 
[for unjending [seasons of joy] 
and un[numbered] ages of peace. 
And as for me, a creature of dust, ... 

Fr. 3 

Pile of dust, how shall Istand in front of the tempest? 
... and He will guard me 

according to the mysteries of His good pleasure. For He 

And they will hide snares of wickedness, net after net. 

... every creature of deceit will come to an end ... 

[wickedness will] turn to nothing 

and the inclination towards iniquity will vanish 

and deeds of deceit [will perish]. 

As for me, creature of [clay] ... 

... how will it gain strength for Thee? 

Thou art the God of [knowledge] 

Thou hast made them [according to Thy design] 

and without Thee [nothing exists]. 

[As for me, creature] of dust, I know 

through the spirit which Thou hast put into me 

that ... 

injustice and deceit will be awe-struck 

and insolence will cease. 

[wojrks of uncleanness will (turn into) sickness 

and judgements (leading to) plague and destruction ... 

XXII (formerly XVIII 11, 27-29+fr. I i+fr. 52 

bottom+fr. 4+fr. 47) 

... [holjiness that are in heaven 

... and He is wonder. 

But they cannot [understand] Thy [marveljs 

and they will not be able to know all [Thy mysteries]. 

[How then can he who retur]ns to his dust? 

As for me, lam a man of sin 

who has waiiowed [in the ways of uncleanness] 

[and been defiied] by the guiit of wici<edness. 

As for me, in the times of wrath [I have faiien(?)]. 

How can I rise in view of my wound 

and l<eep myseif... 

For there is hope for man... 

As for me, creature of ciay, 

I have ieaned [on Thy ioving-l<indness 

and on the multitude of Thy mysteries,] O my God. 

And I l<now that truthful is [Thy mouth, 

and that Thy words are not] revoked. 

As for me, I will rely in my time [on Thy Covenant 

and will rai]se myself to the post 

which Thou hast established for me ... 

Fr. 4 

... As for me, I was frightened by Thy judgements 

Who is found clean in Thy judgement? 

And what is [man before Thee? 

Thou bringest] him to judgement 

and he returns to his dust. 

... [my G]o[d]. 

Thou hast opened my heart for Thy understanding 

and hast unstopped [my] ear[s] ... 

to lean on Thy goodness. 

My heart murmurs ... 

and my heart melts like wax 

because of iniquity and sin.... 

Blessed art Thou, God of knowledge, 

who hast established... 

And Thou hast met Thy servant with this for Thy sake. 

For I know Thy [loving-kindness 

and in] Thy [mercies] I hope in all my existence. 

and I bless Thy name always. 

Do not forsake me In the times [of distress (?)] 

XXIII (formerly XVIII, 1-16+fr. 57 l+fr. 2 I) 

they are confirmed In [the ears] of Thy servant for ever 

... [to announce] Thy marvellous tidings 

Withdraw not Thy hand ... 

that he may be confirmed In Thy Covenant 

and stand before Thee [for ever]. 

[For Thou, O my God,] didst open a [fountain] 

In the mouth of Thy Servant. 

Thou didst engrave by the measuring-cord 

[Thy mysteries] upon his tongue, 

[that] out of his understanding 

[he might] preach to a creature, 

and Interpret these things 

to dust like myself. 

Thou didst open [his fountain] 

that he might rebuke the creature of clay for his way, 

and him who Is born of woman 

for the guilt of his deeds; 

that he might open [the fount of] Thy truth 

to a creature whom Thou upholdest by Thy might; 

[that he might be], according to Thy truth, 

a messenger [In the season] of Thy goodness; 

that to the humble he might bring 

glad tidings of Thy great mercy, 

[proclaiming salvation] 

from out of the fountain [of holiness 

to the contrite] of spirit, 

and everlasting joy to those who mourn. 

Fr. 2 

.. [to pral]se Thee 

and to recount all Thy glory. 

As for me, what am I? 

For I was taken from dust. 

ButTh[ou, Omy God], 

Thou hast done all these [for] Thy [g]lory. 

According to the greatness of Thy loving-kindness 

put the guard of Thy righteousness 

[in the hand of Th]y [servant] for ever 

until deliverance. 

May the interpreters of knowledge be with all my steps 

and those who decide truth [in all my ways]. 

For what is dust among al[1] ... 

Ashes are in their hand: nothing at all. 

and Thou hast shed [Thy Holy] Spirit over dust 

[to bring him into the company] of the 'gods' 

and unite them with the Sons of Heaven. 

Thou hast shed Thy [Ho]ly [Spirit] to atone for guilt 

for they are established in Thy truth. 

[And Thou, my God], 

Thou hast acted wondrously for Thy glory 

4Q427 7 i-ii (1QH, frs. 7, 46, 55, 56, 4Q428 
15,40431 1) 


For I am made to stand with the 'gods', 

and I will not... [glory or majes]tyfor me with fine gold; 

gold and purified gold, [I will] not... in me; 

... will not be reckoned for me. 

Chant, O beloved, sing to the King [of glory. 

Rejoice, in the cong]regation of God. 

Exult in the tents of salvation. 

Give thanks in the dwelling 

[of holiness], 

extol together with the eternal host. 
Magnify our God and glorify our King. 

Sanctify His name witli powerfui iips 

and a victorious tongue. 

Lift up aione your voice in aii ages, 

Let a joyous meditation be fieard. 

Burst out in eternai rejoicings 

and prostrate incessantiy in tlie common assembiy. 

Biess tlie wonderfui Mal<er of exaited tilings, 

Him who proclaims the power of His hand, 

sealing mysteries and revealing secrets, 

lifting up those who stumble and fall, 

[restjoring the progress of those who hope for knowledge 

and humbling the meetings of the everlastingly haughty; 

[sealjing the mysteries of sp[lendour] 

and establi[shing the wonlders of glory. 

O Judge, whose anger is destructive, 

... in righteous loving-kindness and great mercy, 

be gracious to ... 

... mercy to those who bear fruits of His great goodness, 

and the source of... 

II ... wickedness ends... 

[opjpression [ceases], the tyrant ceases... 

treachery [stojps and there are no senseless perversities. 

Light shines and joy bursts forth; 

mourning [vanishes] and sorrow flees. 

Peace is revealed, dread ceases. 

A spring has opened up for an [eternal] bles[sing] 

and for healing in all the everlasting ages. 

Iniquity has stopped, plague has ceased with no more illn[ess]. 

... has been gathered in and... will be no more. 

Announce and say: Great is God, IVIa[ker of marvels]. 

For He humbles the proud spirit with no remnant 

and from the dust He lifts up the poor to [eternal heights]. 

And He lifts him up to the clouds 

to share a common assembly with the 'gods'. 


anger for everlasting destruction. 

He raises freely the totterers on earth, 
and [His] mi[ght is with] their steps, 
and everlasting joy is in their dwellings, 
eternal glory without end [for ever]. 

Let them say: Blessed be God, Author of majestic [wjonders, 

who reveals might splendidly, 

and justifies with knowledge all His creatures, 

so that goodness is on their faces. 

They know the multitude of [His] loving [kindness] 

and the abundance of His mercies 

to all the children of His truth. 

We know Thee, O God of righteousness, 

and we comprehend [Thy ... , O King] 

of glory. 

For we have seen Thy zeal through Thy mighty power 
and have observed [Thy] d[eeds 

in the abundance] of Thy mercies and wondrous forgiveness. 

What is flesh compared to these? 

What do [dust and ashes] amoun[t to] 

that they recite these things from age to age, 

and hold themselves upright [before Thee 

and enter into communion with] the Sons of Heaven. 

No interpreter can answer according to Thy mouth 

and... to Thee. 

For Thou hast established us according to [Thy] ple[asure] 
in the territory [of iniquity] ... 

... we have spoken to Thee and not to a medi[ator] ... 
[And Thou hast lent] an ea[r] to the issue of our lips. 

Annou[nce and say: Blessed be God, 
Creator] of the heavens by His power, 
Desig[ner] of all their devices [by] His strength, 
of the earth by [His] migh[t] ... 

Hymnic Fragment 


The verso side of this papyrus, palaeographically dated to the first half 
of the first century BCE, contains the beginning of the Community Rule 
(4Q255). The recto cam'es a poem similar to the Qumran Hymns or 
IHodayot and elaborates the ^miliar image of the Community as a 
plant in God's garden. 
For the editio phnceps, see E. Schuller, DJD, XXIX, 237-45. 

Fr. 2 

... for the everlasting sea[sons]. 

For the IVIaster. A sim[il]itude about the glory of ... 

A plant of delight, a plant in IHIs garden and in his 


Its twigs will bear fruit and its branches will increase... 
and its branches (reaching) above the elevated support of 

and its splendour offers itself for everlasting generations, 
producing fru[it] for all who are to taste it. 
There will be no wild grapes among its fruits. 
It will have foliage, leaves and blossoms. 
None of its roots will be pulled up from its bed of 
balsam for... 

Apocryphal Psalms (I) 

The incomplete Psalms scroll from Cave 11 (IIQPs^), published by J. 
A. Sanders {DJD, IV, Oxford, 1965), contains seven non-canonical 
poems interspersed among the canonical Psalms. One of these 
figures as Ps. 151 In the Greek Psalter, and four further compositions 
have been preserved In Syriac translation. Three previously unl<nown 
poems and an extract from the Hebrew version of Sirach II also feature 
in the Scroll. 

In Ps. 151 A and B or Syriac Ps. i, the story of the election of David, 
the shepherd boy as ruler of Israel, and his victory over Goliath, are 
poetically retold. Ps. 154 or Syr. Ps. II is a sapiential hymn, the 
beginning and end of which are extant only in Syriac, but 4Q448, 
column A (lines 8 — 10) represents a few words in Hebrew 
corresponding to Ps. 154, 17-20 (cf E. and H. Eshel and A. Yardeni, 
'A Qumran Composition Containing Part of Ps. 154 ... ', IEJ42 (1992), 
201-14). Ps. 155 or Syr Ps. iii Is an amalgam of an individual 
complaint and thanksgiving. Part of it Is an alphabet acrostic. I.e. the 
lines begin with consecutive letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Plea for 
Deliverance is an individual thanksgiving hymn, the beginning of which 
is lost. The Z/on Psalm, of which lines 1-3 and 8-15 are also in a 
fragmentary Psalms scroll from Cave 4 (4Q88 Vli-Vlil), is another 
alphabetic acrostic hymn praising Jerusalem. Finally the Psalm of the 
Creation is a further sapiential hymn. 

A midrashic account of the poetic activities of David Is inserted in 
column XXVIi of HQS, crediting him with 4,050 compositions, 
subdivided into psalms, songs for the daily holocaust, songs for the 

Sabbath sacrifice, songs for festivals and songs for exorcism. Tine 
mention of fifty-two Sabbatlis and the 364 days indicates that the 
author envisaged the soiar year of the Qumran calendar. 

The figure of 4,050 should be viewed against the equally prolific 
literary achievement claimed for Solomon in 1 Kings v, 12 (3,000 
proverbs and 1,005 songs according to ttie Hebrew text; 
3,000proverbs and 5,000 songs according to the Septuagint). As for 
Josephus, he attributes to Solomon 1 ,005 bool^s of poems and 3,000 
books of parables {Antiquities VIII, 44). 

Only this catalogue, written in prose, is definitely sectarian. The 
psalms themselves probably belong to the second century BCE at the 
latest, but they may even date to the thind century BCE. 

Psalm 151 A 

XXVIII Hallelujah. Of David, son of Jesse. 

1 . 1 was smaller than my brothers, and younger than the sons of my 


He made me shepherd of his flock, and a ruler over his kids. 

2. My hands have made a pipe and my fingers a lyre. 

I have rendered glory to the Lord; I have said so in my soul. 

3. The mountains do not testify to him, and the hills do not tell (of 

The trees praise my words and the flocks my deeds. 

4. For who can tell and speak of and recount the works of the 

God has seen all, he has heard all, and he listens to all. 

5. He sent his prophet to anoint me, Samuel to magnify me. 

My brothers went out to meet him, beautiful of figure, beautifiji of 

6. They were tall of stature with beautiful hair, yet the Lord did not 
choose them. 

7. He sent and took me from behind the flock, and anointed me 
with holy oil, as a prince of his people, and a ruler among the 

sons of his Covenant. 

Psalm 151B 

The first display of David's power after God's prophet had anointed 

1 . Then i saw the Philistine taunting [from the enemy lines] ... 

Syriac Psalm ii = Psalm 154 

1 XVIII [Glorify God with a great voice. Proclaim his majesty in the 
congregation of the many. 

2 Glorify his name amid the multitude of the upright and recount 
his greatness with the faithful. 

3 Join] your souls to the good and to the perfect to glorify the Most 

4 Assemble together to make known his salvation. 

And be not slow in making known his strength, and his majesty 
to all the simple. 

5 For wisdom is given to make known the glory of the Lord and to 
recount the greatness of his deeds. She is made known to man, 

7 to declare his strength to the simple, and to give insight into his 
greatness to those without understanding, 

8 they who are far from her gates, who have strayed from her 

9 For the IVlost High is the Lord of Jacob, and his majesty is over 
all his works. 

1 0 And a man who glorifies the IVlost High is accepted by him as 
one bringing an offering, 

11 as one offering he-goats and calves, as one causing the altar 
to grow fat on a multitude of burnt-offerings, as an agreeable 
incense by the hand of the righteous. 

12 From the doors of the righteous her voice is heard, and from 
the congregation of the devout her song. 

1 3 When they eat their fiii, she is mentioned, and when they drinl< 
in community together. 

14 Their meditation is on the Law of the Most High, and their 
words are for mal<ing l<nown his strength. 

1 5 How far from the wicl<ed is her word, and her l<nowiedge from 
the insoient. 

1 6 Behold the eyes of the Lord have compassion on the good, 

17 and his mercy is great over those who giorify him; from an evil 
time he saves [their] souls. 

1 8 [Bless] the Lord who redeems the humble from the hand of 
str[angers] [and deliv]ers [the perfect from the hand of the 

1 9 [who lifts up a horn out of Ja]cob, and a judge [out of Israel]. 

20 [He desires his tabernacle in Zion, and chooses Jerusalem for 

SyriacPsalm in =Psalm 155 

I . XXIV O Lord, I have called to Thee, hear me. 

2. 1 have spread out my hands towards Thy holy dwelling-place. 

3. Turn Thine ear and grant me my request, 

4. and do not withhold my plea from me. 

5. Construct my soul and do not cast it away, 

6. and do not leave it alone before the wicked. 

7. May the true judge turn away from me the rewards of evil. 

8. Lord, do not judge me according to my sins, for no living man is 
righteous before Thee. 

9. Lord, cause me to understand Thy Law and teach me Thy 

10. And the multitude shall hear of Thy deeds, and peoples shall 
honour Thy glory. 

I I . Remember me and forget me not, and bring me not to 

unbearable hardships. 

12. Put away from me the sin of my youth, and may my sins not be 
remembered against me. 

1 3. Lord, cieanse me from the evil plague, and let it not return to 

14. Dry up its roots within me, and permit not its leaves to flourish 
in me. 

1 5. Lord, Thou art glory; therefore my plea is fulfilled before Thee. 
1 6. 6 To whom shall I cry so that he will grant it to me? What more 

can the po[wer] of the sons of men do? 
1 7. From before Thee, O Lord, comes my trust. I cried to the Lord 

and he answered me; he healed the brokenness of my heart. 
18.81 was sleepy [and I] slept; I dreamt and also [I awoke]. 

1 9. [Lord, Thou didst support me when my heart was stricken, and 
I called upon the Lor]d [my saviour]. 

20. Now I will see their shame; I have relied on Thee, and I will not 
be ashamed. (Render glory for ever and ever.) 

21 . Redeem Israel, Thy pious one, O Lord, and the house of 
Jacob, Thine elect. 

Prayer for Deliverance 

XIX For no worm thanks Thee, rxjr a maggot recounts Thy loving- 

Only the living thank Thee, all they whose feet totter, thank Thee, 
when Thou makest known to them Thy loving-kindness, and causest 
them to understand Thy righteousness. 

For the soul of all the living is in Thy hand; Thou hast given breath to 
all flesh. 

O Lord, do towards us according to Thy goodness, according to the 
greatness of Thy mercies, and according to the greatness of Thy 
righteous deeds. 

The Lord listens to the voice of all who love his name arxJ does not 
permit his loving-kindness to depart from them. 

Blessed be the Lord, doer of rigliteous deeds, who crowns his pious 
ones with ioving-i<indness and mercies. 

My soul shouts to praise Thy name, to praise with jubilation Thy 
mercies, to announce Thy faithfulness; there is no limit to Thy praises. 

I belonged to death because of my sins, and my iniquities had sold 
me to Sheol. 

But Ttiou didst save me, O Lord, according to the greatness of Thy 
mercies, according to the greatness of Thy righteous deeds. 

I, too, have loved Thy name, and have taken refuge in Thy shadow. 

When I remember Thy power, my heart is strengthened and I rely on 
Thy mercies. 

Forgive my sins, O Lord, and purify me of my iniquity. 

Grant me a spirit of faithfulness and knowledge; let me not be 
dishonoured in ruin. 

Let not Belial dominate me, nor an unclean spirit; let pain and the 
evil inclination not possess my bones. 

For Thou, O Lord, art my praise, and I hope in Thee every day My 
brethren rejoice with me and the house of my father is astounded by 
Thy graciousness. 

... for ever I will rejoice in Thee. 

Apostrophe to Z/on 

XXIII will remember you, O Zion, for a blessing; 

with all my might I love you; 

your memory is to be blessed for ever. 

Your hope is great, O Zion; 

Peace and your awaited salvation will come. 

Generation after generation shall dwell in you, 

and generations of the pious shall be your ornament. 

They who desire the day of your salvation 

shall rejoice in the greatness of your glory. 

They shall be suckled on the fullness of your glory, 

and in your beautiful streets they shall make tinkling sounds. 

You shall remember the pious deeds of your prophets, 

and shall glorify yourself In the deeds of your pious ones. 

Cleanse violence from your midst; 

lying and Iniquity, may they be cut off from you. 

Your sons shall rejoice within you, 

and your cherished ones shall be joined to you. 

How much they have hoped In your salvation, 

and how much your perfect ones have mourned for you? 

Your hope, O ZIon, shall not perish, 

and your expectation will not be forgotten. 

Is there a just man who has perished? 

Is there a man who has escaped his Iniquity? 

Man Is tried according to his way, 

each Is repaid according to his deeds. 

Your oppressors shall be cut off from around you, O ZIon, 

and all who hate you shall be dispersed. 

Your praise Is pleasing, O ZIon; 

It rises up In all the world. 

Many times I will remember you for a blessing; 

I will bless you with all my heart. 

You shall attain to eternal righteousness, 

and shall receive blessings from the noble. 

Take the vision which speaks of you, 

and the dreams of the prophets requested for you. 

Be exalted and Increase, O ZIon; 

Praise the Most High, your Redeemer! 

May my soul rejoice In your glory! 

Hymn to the Creator 

XXVI The Lord Is great and holy, the Most Holy for generation after 


Majesty goes before him, and after him abundance of many waters. 
Lovlng-klndness and truth are about his face; truth and Judgement and 

righteousness are the pedestal of his throne. 

He divides iight from obscurity; he establishes the dawn by the 
knowledge of his heart. 

When all his angels saw it, they sang, for he showed them that which 
they had not known. 

He crowns the mountains with fruit, with good food for all the living. 

Blessed be the master of the earth with his power, who establishes 
the world by his wisdom. 

By his understanding he stretched out the heaven, and brougfit forth 
[wind] from his st[ores]. 

He made [lightnings for the rai]n, and raised mist from the end [of the 

An Account of David's Poems 

XXVII David son of Jesse was wise and brilliant like the light of the 
sun; (he was) a scribe, intelligent and perfect in all his ways before 

God and men. 

YHWH gave him an intelligent and brilliant spirit, and he wrote 3,600 
psalms and 364 songs to sing before the altar for the daily perpetual 
sacrifice, for all the days of the year; and 52 songs for the Sabbath 
offerings; and 30 songs for the New Moons, for Feast-days and for the 
Day of Atonement. 

In all, the songs which he uttered were 446, and 4 songs to make 
music on behalf of those stricken (by evil spirits). 

In all, they were 4,050. 

All these he uttered through prophecy which was given him from 
before the Most High. 

Apocryphal Psalms (II) 


The last four columns (VII- x) of a fragmentary Psalms manuscript from 
Cave 4 have preserved three apocryphal poems. The first of these 
(cols, vil-vill) Is Identical with 11Q5 XXII already presented (pp. 311- 
12). Of the other two, the first (col. ix) focuses on the final judgement 
and the second (col. x) Is a hymn to Judah. 
For the editio phnceps, see P. W. Skehan etal., DJD, XVI, 102-6. 

IX ... Congregation 

and they shall praise 

the name of the Lord, 

for He has come to judge every action, 

to remove the wicked from the earth 

[so that the sons] of Iniquity shall not be found. 

The heavens [shall give] their dew 

and there shall be no... [within] their [boundarlejs. 

And the earth 

shall [give] Its fruit In Its time 

and Its [prod]uct shall not fall. 

The fruit trees [shall] ... of Its vineyards 

and Its ... shall not He. 

The poor shall eat 

and the God-fearers shall be sated. 

X ... 

Then heaven and earth shall exult together. 
Let all the stars of the evening twilight exult. 
Rejoice, Judah, rejoice! 

Rejoice, rejoice and be giad with giadness! 

Celebrate your feasts and pay your vows 

fortliere is no Beiiai in your midst. 

Raise your hand and fortify your right hand! 

Behoid the enemy shaii perish 

and aii the worl<ers of iniquity shaii be dispersed. 

But Thou, O Lord, art for eve[r]. 

Thy giory shaii be for eve[r and evejr. 


Apocryphal Psalms (III) 


Badly worn remains of five columns of a Scroll witli apocryphal psalms, 
at least partly devoted to exorcism, have survived in Cave 1 1 . Most of 
the columns are so poorly preserved that no continuous reading is 
possible. In col. I, where the name of Solomon implies that this was 
one of the poems attributed to him, the repeated use of the term 
'demons' and mention of 'healing' suggest the genre of the 
composition. In col. Ill a 'powerful angel' is mentioned who seems to be 
charged with defeating the demon and casting it to the 'great abyss' 
and the 'nethermost [hell]'. Col. v, 3 — 13 has been recognized as the 
canonical Psalm xci, preceded by small remains of the exorcistic 
poem of col. IV and followed by a liturgical formula, 'And they shall 
an[swer. Amen, amen.] Selah.' All the lacunae of col. IV have been 
conjecturally filled by E. Puech in a French rendering. His presentation 
will be reproduced here in English; it provides a possible general 
understanding of the text, but with no guarantee that any of the restored 
details is correct. 

For preliminary editions, see J. P. M. van der Ploeg, 'Un petit 
rouleau de psaumes apocryphes (IIQPsAp^)', in G. Jeremias eta/., 
eds.. Tradition und Glaube (K. G. I<uhn Festschrift) (Gottingen, 1971), 
128-39; E. Puech, 'Les deux derniers psaumes davidiques du rituel 
d'exorcisme, IIQPsAp^ IV 4-v 14', in D. Dimant and U. Rappaport, 
eds., The Dead Sea Scrolls: Forty Years of Research (Leiden, 1 992), 
64-89; of. esp. pp. 68-9. For theecfrffo pririceps, see F. Garcia 
IVIartinezef a/., DJD, XXIII, 181-205. 

Ill ... 

Who [has] pe[rformed these signs] and marv[els on] the earth? 

The Lord is the one [who] performed th[ese through] His [might]. 
He adjures aii [His] a[ngeis] and aii the see[d of hoiiness] who stand 
before [Him, 

and mal<es aii the hea]vens testify and the whoie earth 

[against those] who sinned against [aii men], 

and acted [wicl<ediy] against every hu[man. 

And] they l<now [the mysteries of] His m[arveis] which they do not... 

[and they fear] the Lord... to l<iii... 

... the Lord... the Lord... 

and they wiii fear that great biow. 

IV. .. 

The Lord wiii strii<e you with a [grea]t b[iow] for your destruction... 

and in iHis anger He wiii send against you 

a mighty angei [to execute] aii His decisions, 

who wiii be [without] mercy on you... against aii these, 

who [wiii tai<e] you [down] to the great abyss, 

[and to] the nethermost [heii.] 

... darl< [in the gr]eat abyss... no more on the earth. 

... for ever, and... by the curse of Abaddon (the bottom of heii) 

...the furious anger of the L[ord].... 

V. .. 

[Ra]phaei heaied them. Amen, amen. Seiah. 

Of David ... [an incan]tation in the name of the Lor[d. 

Caii an]ytime on heav[en], 

for He wiii come to you in the ni[ght, 

and] you wiii say to Him: 

Who are you, [one born of] man 

And of the seed of the ho[iy on]es? 

Your face is a face of in[anity] 

And your horns are horns of dream. 

You are darl<ness and not iight, 

injustice and not righteousness. 

The Prince of the host, the Lord, 

[will send] you [down to the lowest he]ll, 

[and will close the ga]tes of bronze 

through [which n]o light [passes] 

and [the] sun wh[ich rises on the] righteous 

[will] not [enlighten you] ... 

And you will say... 

VI ... 

To David. 0[n words of incanta]tion. [Cry out al]l the time in the name 


towards heave[n when] Beli[al] comes to you. 
[And sa]y to him: 

Who are you? [Be afraid of] man and of the seed of the ho[ly ones]. 
Your face is a face of [nothin]g and your horns are horns of dr[eam]. 
[You ar]e [d]arkness and not light; [injustic]e and not righteousness. 
[The prin]ce of the h[os]t [is against you]; the Lord [will cast] you [to] 
the nethermost [hell], 

[closed by] bronze ga[tes] through [which n]o light [shall pass]; 
nor [shall shine there the light of the] sun which [will rise] over the 
righteous to il[lumine his face. 
And] you will say: 

Is [there not an angel with the ri]ghteous when Oudgement] comes [for] 
S[atan for] he caused him evil? 

[And the spirit of t]ruth [will save him] from dar[kness because 
righteousness is for him. 

... for ever [all the] son of Bel[ial. Amen, amen.] Selah. 

Non-canonical Psalms 


Two poorly preserved manuscripts, the first consisting of seven and 
ttie second of 110 fragments, contain apocryphal Hebrew religious 
poetry resembling biblical Psalms more than the Hodayot (IQH) from 
Qumran. Some of them reuse and combine canonical Psalms (e.g. fr 
15 re-employing Pss. Ixxxvi and Ixxxix, and fr. 24, Ps. xviii). Not one 
single line has survived intact and only a few of these largely mediocre 
poems can be translated. Their editor, Eileen Schuller, assigns the 
collection to the Persian-Hellenistic era and considers it to be a pre- 
sectarian composition. Palaeographically the manuscript is dated to 
the first half of the first century BCE. No historical allusions are 
included. Lil<e many of the biblical Psalms, these poems bore titles, 
three of which have been preserved: 'Psalm of Obadlah' (4Q380 111, 
8); 'Hymn of the Man of God' (4Q381 24, 4) and 'Prayer of Manasseh, 
King of Judah when the King of Assyria Imprisoned him' (4Q381 33, 
8). The attrlbufions are no doubt pseudeplgraphlc. Whether Obadlah 
is the minor prophet or the court official mentioned in 1 Kings xviii, 3 
cannot be decided. 
For the editio princeps, see Eileen Schuller, DJD, XI, 75-172. 

4Q380, fr. 1 

I ... [Jeru]salem, that is [the city 

chosen by the L]ord from everlasting to [everlasting.] 

... the holy ones 

[for the na]me of the Lord is called on her, 
[and his glory] is seen on Jerusalem and Zion. 
Who will utter the name of the Lord, 
and who mal<es all his praises heard? 

The Lord [remem]bered him in his favour 
and visited him 

that he might show him the prosperity [of] his [cho]sen 
mai<ing him reOoice in the giadness of his nation] 
(cf. Ps. cvi, 2,4-5). 

II [And] he made for you a man w[ho ... ] 
for he is the one [whose] words they kept 
which are for all the sons of Israel... 
... your hand will [not] save you, 
for the strength of [your] God does good. 
And those (filled with) wicked hatred, 
how long will you delight to do evil? ... 

Psalm of Obadiah. 

God... truth is in it, and his loving kindness ... 

Fr. 2 

... mountains and hills... 

All who are founded on it will shake... 

[and they will cry to] the Lord in their distress. 

From their oppression 

He will deliver them. 

For the Lord is gracious to the pious... 

To the man... 

4Q381,fr. I 

... [his wisdom] I have declared, 

and I will meditate on his marvel, 

and it will become my teacher. 

Judgement... of my mouth, 

and to the simple and they will understand, 

and to the senseless and they will know. 

O Lord, how mi[ghty] ... marvels 

He made heaven and earth in his days (?), 

and by his word ... the riverbeds 


night and st[a]rs and constellations... 

and He caused them to shine ... 

[every] tree and every fru[it of the vineyar]d 

and every produce of the field. 

And according to his words... all... 

mfankind] and by his spirit he established them 

to have dominion overall this, 

over the ground and all [its produce(?)] 

from new moon to new moon, from festival to festival, 

from day to day to eat its fruit, fruit of ... 

... and birds and all that belongs to them 

to eat the best of everything and also... 

... in them and all his hosts and His ange[ls] ... 

to serve man and to minister to him... 

Fr. 15 

... Thou wilt turn my heart ... 

[Turn to me and take pity on me; 

give thy strength to Thy servant] 

and save the son of Thy handmaid. 

Show me [a sign of Thy favour, 

that those who hate me may see and be put to shame 

because Thou,] my [G]od, hast helped me (Ps. Ixxxvi, 16-17) 

and I will prepare (a sacrifice) for Thee, my God. 

... [Thou dost rule the rag]ing of the sea; 

Thou stillest its waves. 

[Thou didst crush Rahab like a carcass, 

Thou didst scatter Thine enemies with Thy mighty arm] 

(Ps. Ixxxix, 10-11). 

[The world and] all that is in it. Thou hast founded them 
(ibid. 12). 

Thou hast a [mighty] arm; strong is Thy hand. 

high Thy right hand (ibid. 14) 

[For who in the sl<ies can be compared to thee,] my God? 

And who among the sons of 'gods' 

and in aii [the councii of the hoiy ones? ... 

... For Thou] art the glory of its majesty. 

As for me, Thine anointed one, I have understood... 

[I wiii mal<e] thee [l<now]n, for Thou hast made me l<now; 

Iwiii have insight, for Thou hast given me insight... 

For on Thy name, my God, we shaii caii, 

and [we shaii wait] for Thy saivation. 

And they wiii put it on iil<e a garment 

and iii<e a dress... 

Fr. 17 spiendour Thou wiit iool< on Judah and... 
My God, Thou wiit swaiiow them up 
And [fire] wiii de[vourthem] ... 

Fr. 24 

... Psaim of the Man of God. 
Lord, God ... 

He has redeemed Judah from aii distress 
and from Ephraim... 
... generation. 

Those who have passed his test wiii praise him 
and say, 'Arise [O God'] ... 
Thy name is my saivation, 

my rocl<, my fortress and [my] refuge [is my God] (Ps. xviii. 
On the day of... i wiii caii on the Lord and he wiii answer me 
my heip... those who hate me. 
And he wiii say,... 

[My c]ry be[fore him] comes to his ears (Ps. xviii, 7) 
[From his tempie he wiii hear my] voi[ce]. 
[And] the earth wiii [re]ei [and rocl<. 

and the foundations of the mountains trembie... for he is 

Smol<e went up from his nostriis (Ps. xviii, 7-9) ... 

Fr. 31 

... in the net which they have conceaied ... 
I wiii sing to ... 

I wiii meditate over Thy wonders 
for to ... before Thee... 

Thou dost save me and iift me up from the tents of death 

... before aii ... 

Aii its ways come to ... 

in a hoiy piace ... [Seiah.] vacat 

... [Prayer of... I<]ing of Judah. 

Hearo [my] Go[d] ... 

I wiii recount before those who fear Thee... 
Who can understand Thy [th]oughts? 
For my oppressors have increased before Thee. 
Thou hast l<nown them 

and Thou hast subdued the enemies of my soui before 
Thine e[yes]. 
For i wiii iive ... 

[and] Thou shait [not] conceai my iniquity to those with 

Thou shait siay them (the enemies) O God of my saivation. 

The days of my existence are treasured up. 

What can a man say (but) 'Here i am' ? 

And how [dost Thou deiiver] to the sword 

those who wait for me, 

those who say. .. on the day of wrath? 

They have woven a crown for my head. 

For their giory is a spiendid piiiar... 

... from the Bool< of ii[fe]. 

Those who frighten me wiii be cut off 

And my enemies wiii finish ... 

.. a song and thanksgiving ... 

Fr. 33 

... Rise [above the heaven]s, O Lord, 

and [my] God ... 

And iet us giory in Thy might 

for [Thy wonders] are inscrutabie 

... Thou Shalt piace me 

and Thy chastisement wili be my Ooy]. 

... everlasting and to extol. Thee. 

For my sins have become too many for me... 

But Thou, my God, shalt send Thy spi[rit] 

[and Thy mercy] 

to the son of Thy handmaid 

and Thy loving-kindness to the servant who is near Thee ... 
I will exult and rejoice in Thee before those who fear [Thee], 
for [Thou shalt judge] Thy servants in Thy righteousness, 
and according to Thy loving-kindness 
... to save ... to thee. Selah. 

Prayer of Manasseh, King of Judah whenthe King of Assyria 
gaoled him. 

... [my Gjod ... my salvation is near in Thine eyes ... 

I wait for Thy delivering presence, 

and I feel faint before Thee because of my s[in]. 

For [Thou hast] enlarged [Thy mercies(?)], 

and I have multiplied guilt. 

And thus ... 

from eternal joy 

and my soul shall not see goodness ... 
He has lifted me up on high 
above a nation ... 

And I did not remember thee [in Thy placje of h[oliness]; 
I did not serve [Thee] ... 

Fr. 45 

... I will make understand 

I fear Thee and will cleanse myself 

Of abominations known to me. 

I give my soul to be humbled before Thee. 

They have multiplied sin 

And they plot against me to imprison me. 

But I have trusted Thee ... 

And do not judge me, my God, ... 

Those who conspire against me 

Let loose their lying tongue ... 

Fr. 46 

... [fjools. 

... Thy precepts and Thy splendour and Thy beauty ... 
and like clouds they spread over the fa[ce] of the earth. 
They will be scattered greatly until ... 
Man will not be strong and will not rise 
... [and] Thou hast [t]ested all. 

And the elect, like offerings. Thou wilt purify before Thee, 

but the hated ones Thou wilt reject like impurity. 

And a stormy wind ... their [pjractice. 

And those who fear Thee shall be before Thee always. 

(Their) horns are horns made of iron to gore many, 

and they will gore ... 

And Thou wilt make their hoofs of bronze 

but sinners like dung shall be trampled upon the ground ... 

Fr. 69 

... When he saw that the peoples [of the la]nd behaved 


... all the land (turned) wholly into impure uncleanness, 

and from the beginning marvellously ... he consulted his heart 

to destroy them from it (the land) and make on it a 
[hoiy(?)] peopie. 

... in you and he gave you through his spirit prophets 
to instruct and teach you ... 

... your [God(?)] descended from heaven and spol<e to you 

to instruct you and bring you bacl< 

from the worl<s of the inhabitants [of the iand]. 

... [prejcepts, iaws and commandments 

he established through a covenant by the hand [of Moses]. 

... dwelt (?) on the land. Then it will be cleansed and ... 

... to consideryou whether you will be his. 

And if [not,] ... 

And to breach the covenant which he made with you 

and to become a stranger and not ... 

... over wickedness and to change the words of his mouth ... 

Frs. 76-7 

... [the congregati]on of the Holy of Holies 

and the lot of the King of Kings ... 

... my words and they will consider the wisdom 

which is issued from my mouth. 

... and a true judge and faithful witness. 

Is there strength in you to answer Him ... 

... to hear. 

... Who among you will answer and stand up against his 
rebuke? ... 

... For you have many judges and countless (hostile) witnesses. 

But ... the Lord will sit in judgement against you, 

judging truly and without injustice ... 

... his spirits to pronounce on you true judgements. 

Is there understanding for you to learn ... ? 

... Lord of lords, mighty and marvellous and none is like him. 

He has chosen y[ou instead of powerjful [peoples] 

and great nations to be his people to rule over all ... 

... [heajven and earth 

and as the highest above all the nations of the earth ... 



Several fragments of a poem inspired by the biblical Book of 
Lamentations have been preserved in Cave 4 (4Q179). Only fragment 
2 offers a text long enough for intelligible translation. See J. IV1. Allegro 
and A. A. Anderson, DJD, V, 75-7; of J. Strugnell, RQ 7 (1970), 250- 
52. A second work of a similar nature (4Q501) has appeared in IVI. 
Baillet, DJD, VII, 79-80. Both texts are dated to the second half of the 
first century BCE. 

4Q179,fr. 2 

[How] solitary [lies] the city, 

the princess of all the peoples is desolate 

like a forsaken woman; 

and all her [daughters are forsak[en] 

[like] a forsaken woman, 

like a woman hurt and forsaken 

by her [husband]. 

All her palaces and [her] wal[ls] are 

like a barren woman; 

and like a sheltered woman 

are all [her] paths; 

[all her] ... 

like a woman of bitterness, 

and all her daughters are like women 

mourning for [their] hus[bands]; 

[all her] ... like women 

deprived of their only children. 

Weep, weep, Jer[usalem] 

[her tears flow] upon her cheeks 
because of her sons ... 


Give not our inheritance to strangers, 

nor our (hard-earned) property to foreigners. 

Remember that we are [the forsal<en] of Thy peopie 

and the forsal<en of Thine inheritance. 

Remember the desoiate children of Thy Covenant... 

T[hy] freeiy devoted ... ; 

they err with no one to bring them bacl<; 

they are brol<en with none to bind them; 

[they are bent down with none to ra]ise them up. 

The damned of Thy peopie have surrounded me 

with their iying tongues. 

They have been turned ... 

and Thy boughs to the progeny of a woman. 

Lool< and see the shame of the sons of [Thy peopie (?), 

for] our sl<in [is burning] 

and feverish heat has seized us 

because of their reviiing tongue. 

Songs for the Holocaust of the Sabbath 

(4Q400— 407, 11Q17, Masada 1039-200) 

Fragments of a document concemed with heavenly worship were first 
published by J. Strugnell under the titie 'The Angelic Liturgy, Congress 
Volume Oxford, Supplements to Vetus Testamentum, VII (Leiden, 
1960), 318-45. The full material, viz. eight very damaged manuscripts 
from Cave 4 (4Q400-407), small fragments from Cave 11 (11Q17) 
and a large fragment from Masada (1039-200), was subsequently 
edited by Carol Newsom in DJD, XI, 173-401. For 11Q17 see F 
Garcia IVIartinez etal., DJD, XXIII, 259-304. 

From the point of view of palaeography all the manuscripts are 
dated to the first century BCE, with the exception of the IVlasada 
fragment, which belongs to the first half of the first century CE. The 
songs contain angelic praises of God assigned to the first thirteen 
sabbaths, i.e. the first quarter of the solar year. They imply the 
simultaneity of heavenly and earthly worship. Although often obscure, 
the poems depict the celestial sanctuary, the throne-chariot, and the 
various groups participating in the angelic liturgy; they also Include the 
words of the benedictions sung by the seven archangels. 

The main source of inspiration is the Book of Ezekiel, especially 
chapters i and x in connection with the throne-chariot and xl-xlviii for the 
heavenly sanctuary. 

The songs include nothing that can be dated. On the basis of the 
script and on general grounds the composition is said to belong to the 
first century BCE. 

The Merkabah, or divine throne-chariot, was a central subject in 
ancient and medieval Jewish esotericism and mysticism. Hence this 
early post-biblical manifestation of the speculation Is of considerable 
historical importance for the study of the so-called Merkabahmystidsm 
and of the Hekhaloth ('heavenly palaces') literature. It is noteworthy 

that the Mishnah prohibits the use of Ezekiel's passage about the 
chariot as a prophetic reading in synagogue (Megillah IV, 10) or even 
its discussion in private, unless with a sage already familiar with the 
subject (Hagigah 11, 1 ). 

The presence of this Qumran document in the fortress of Masada is 
best explained by assuming either that a number of Essenes joined 
the revolutionaries and took with them some of their manuscripts, or 
that the rebels occupied the Qumran area after its evacuation by the 
Community and later transferred some Essene manuscripts to their 
final place of resistance. 

4Q400 fr. I i 

[To the iVlaster Song of the holocaust of the] first [Sabbajth, on the 
fourth of the first month. 

Praise [the God of ... ] the 'gods' (= elohim) of supreme holiness; in 
[his] divine [kingship, rejoice. For he has established] supreme 
holiness among the everlastingly holy, the Holy of Holies, to be for him 
the priests of [the inner Temple in his royal sanctuary], ministers of the 
Presence In his glorious innermost Temple chamber In the 
congregation of all the gods (= elim) of [knowledge, and in the 
congregation of all the 'gods' of] God, he engraved his precepts for all 
the spiritual works, and [his glorious] judgements [for all who lay the 
foundations of] knowledge, the people (endowed with) his glorious 
understanding, the 'gods' who are close to knowledge ... of eternity 
and from the fountain of holiness to the sanctuary of supreme [holiness] 
... prie[sts] of the inner Temple, ministers of the Presence of the [most] 
holy King ... his glory. They shall grow in strength decree by decree to 
be seven [eternal councils. For he fojunded them [for] himself as the 
most [holy who minister In the hjoly of holies ... do not endure [those 
who perjvert the way. There is [njothing impure in their sanctuaries. He 
engraved for them [precepts relating to ho]ly gifts; by them, all the 
everlastingly holy shall sanctify themselves. He shall purify the 
[luminously] pure [to repajy all those who render their way crooked. 

Their expiations shall obtain his goodwill for all those who repent from 
sin... knowledge among the priests of the inner Temple, and from their 
mouth (proceed) the teachings of the holy with the judgements of [his 
glory] ... his [grajces for everlasting merciful forgiveness. In his zealous 
vengeance ... he has established for himself as priests of the inner 
Temple, the most holy ... of gods, the priests of the highest heights who 
are near [to] ... 

4Q4002 (4Q401, fr. 14, 7-8) 

... wonderfully to extol Thy glory among the divine beings of knowledge, 
and the praises of Thy kingship among the most ho[ly]. More 
wonderfully than 'gods' and men they are glorified amid all the camps 
of the 'gods' and feared by companies of men. They recount his royal 
majesty according to their knowledge and exalt [his glory in all] his 
royal heavens. In all the highest heights [they shall sing] marvellous 
psalms according to all [their understanding, and the glorious 
splendour] of the King of the 'gods' they shall recount on their stations 
... for what shall we be counted among them? For what shall our 
priesthood be counted In their dwellings? [How shall our] ho[liness 
compare with their supreme] holiness? How does the offering of our 
tongue of dust compare with the knowledge of the divine [beings] ... 
our jubilation. Let us extol the God of knowledge ... Holy of Holies and 
His understanding is above all those who possess knowledge ... 

4Q402, fr. 4, 9-10 

... 'gods' run to his visitation and the voice of a crowd ... of 'gods' in the 
war of heaven. And it will be ... 

4Q402 4, 11-15=MASADA FRAGMENT 1,1-7 

... wonderful new works. All these he has done wonder[fully with all the 
eternally hidden things] ... all the words of knowledge; for from the God 
of knowledge (comes) all that exists for ever, [and from] his [plan]s 
(come) all the eternally appointed. He produces the former things in 
their appointed times, and the latter things in their seasons. IMone 
among those who know the [wonderfully] revealed things can 
comprehend them before he makes them. When he makes them, none 
of [the doers of righteousjness can understand his plan, for they are his 
glorious works. Before tliey come into being, (they derive) [from] his 

[For the IVIaster. So]ng of the holocaust of the sixth Sabbath on the 
ninth of the [second] month. 

[Praise the Gjod of gods, you inhabitants of the highest heights... 
[h]oly of holies and exalt his glory ... [knjowledge of the everlasting 
gods ... 

4Q403 1, i, 1-29 (4Q404-5)=MASADA FRAGMENT 

[Psalm of exaltation (uttered) by the tongue] of the third of the 
sovereign Princes, an exaltation ... He shall exalt the God of the angels 
on high seven times with seven wonderful exaltations. 

Psalm of praise (uttered) by the tongue of the four[th] to the Mighty 
One above all the [gods], seven wonderful mighty deeds. He shall 
praise the God of mighty deeds seven times with seven words of 
[marvellous] prais[e]. 

Psalm of thanksgiving (uttered) by ttie tongue of the fifth to the 
[K]in[g] of glory with its seven wonderful thanksgivings. He shall thank 
the God of glory se[ven times with se]v[en wor]ds of wonderful 

[Psalm ofl exultation (uttered) by the tongue of the sixth to [the] God 

of goodness with its seven [wonderiul] exultations. He shall exult before 
the Ki[ng of] goodness seven times with sev[en words of] wonderful 

Psalm of [singing (uttered) by the t] ongue of the seventh of the 
[sovereign] Prin[ces], a powerful song [to the Go]d of ho[liness] with its 
se[ven] marvellous [songs]. He shall sing [to] the Kin[g of ho]liness 
seven times with [seven w]ords of [wonderful] so[ngs; sevjen psa[lms 
(singing) his blessings; sev]en [psalm]s of magnification of [his 
righiteousness; seven psalms] of exaltation of [his] kingshi[p; seven] 
psalms of [praises of his glory; sevjen p[salms of thanksgivings for his 
marvellous deeds]; [seven psalms of ex]ul[tation of] his power; seven 
[psalms singin]g his holiness; ... [seven times with seven wonderful 
words, words of exaltation of the Sovereign Princes.] 

In the glo[ri]ous name of God, [the first of] the sov[erei]gn Princes 
sha[ll bless] all the ... [with seven wonderful words blessing all] their 
[councils] in [his holy] sanctuary [with sev]en wonderful wo[rd]s, [and he 
shall bless those who kn]ow the everlasting things. 

[In the name of] his truth, [the second of the sovereign Princes shall 
bless] all [their] sta[tions with] se[ven] wonderful word[s and he shall 
bless with] seven [wonderful] words. [He shall bless all those who exalt 
the] King with seven g[lor]iou[s] w[ords of his] marvels, [all the] eternally 

[In the name of] his exalted kingship, the third [of the sovereign 
Princes shall bless all who are lif]ted up [in kn]owledge with se[ven 
w]ords of exal[ta]tion ... [of his true kn]ow[ledge], he shall bless with 
seven marvellous words; and he shall bless all [who are destined] for 
righteousness [with seven] wonderful [w]ords. 

In the name of the King's majesty [the fourth] of the [sovereign] 
Princes shall bless with seven [majestic] words [all who] walk 
[upjrightly He shall bless all the gods [close to] true knowledge [with 
sevejn righteous words (for gaining) [his gl]o[rious] favours. 

In the name of [the majesty] of his marvellous deeds, the fifth 
[sovereign] Prince shall bless with seven [words] of his exalted truth [all 
who] ... purity. [He shall bless] all who eagerly do his will with seven 
[marvellous words. And he shall bless] all who confess him with seven 
majestic [worjds that they may thank [him forever]. 

In the name of [the mighty deeds of] the gods the sixth sovereign 
Prince shall bless with seven words of his marvellous mighty deeds all 
who are mighty in wisdom. He shall bless all the perfect of way with 
seven marvellous words to be in attendance for [ever]. He shall bless 
all who wait for him with seven marvellous words that they may obtain 
the return of his [gracious] favours. 

In the name of his holiness, the seventh of ttie sovereign Princes 
shall bless with seven words of his marvellous holiness all the holy 
founders of kno[wledge. He shall bless] all wtK> exalt his statutes with 
sev[en] marvellous [wo]rds (which shall be for them) stout shields. He 
shall bless all [who are destined for] righteousness [arxl always] 
forever [pra]ise his glorious kingship with seven [marvellous words] for 
everlasting peace. 

In [the name of his holiness] all the [sovereign] Princes [shall bless 
together] the God of the divine beings [in] all their sevenfold 
t[estimonies]. They shall bless those destined for righteousness and all 
the blessed... the eter[na]ll[y ble]ssed for them. 

Blessed be [the] Lo[r]d, the Kin[g of] all, who is above all blessing 
and p[raise. He shall bless all the holy] who bless [him and proclaim 
him righ]te[ous] in the name of his glory. [And he shall b]less all who 
are blessed for ever. 

4Q403 I, i, 30-46 (4Q405) 

For the Master. Song of the tiolocaust of the seventh Sabbath on the 
sixteenth of the month. 

Praise the most high God, O you high among all the gods of 
knowledge. Let the holy ones of the 'gods' sanctify the King of glory, 
who sanctifies by his holiness all his holy ones. 

O Princes of the praises of all the 'gods', praise the God of majestic 

For in the splendour of praises is the glory of His kingship. 

In it are (contained) the praises of all the 'qods' toqettier with the 

splendour of all [His] klng[shlp]. 

Exalt His exaltation on high, O 'gods', above the gods on high, and 
His glorious divinity above all the highest heights. 

For He ps the God of gods], of all the Prirx^s on high, and the King 
of klng[s] of all the eternal councils. 

By a discerning goodwill (expressed by) the words of His mouth a[ll 
the gods on high] come into being, at the opening of His lips, all the 
eternal spirits, by His discerning goodwill, all His creatures in their 

Exult, O you who exult [in his knowledge, with] an exultation among 
the wonderful 'gods'; 

utter His glory with the tongue of all who utter knowledge; 

may His wonderful exultation be in the mouth of all who utter [His 

[For He] is the God of all who exult in everlasting knowledge, 

and the Judge through His might of all the spirits of understanding. 

Celebrate O all celebrating gods, the King of majesty, for all the 
gods of knowledge celebrate His glory, 

and all the spirits of righteousness celebrate His truth, and seek 
acceptance of their knowledge by the judgements of His mouth, 

and of their celebrations when His migtrty hand executes (?) 
judgements of reward. 

Sing to the God of power with an offering of the princely spirit, a 
song of divine joy, 

and a jubilation among all the lioly, a worKlerlul song for eter[nal] 

With these all the f[oundations of the holjy of holies shall praise, 
the pillars bearing the highest abode, and all the corners of its 

Sing to the Go[d who is ajwesome in strength ... 

to extol together ttie splendid firmament, the supreme purity of [His] 

holy sanctuary. 

[Praise] Him, O divine spirits, pral[slng for ever and] ever the 
firmament of the highest heavens, 
all ... and its walls, a[l]l its [structure, its shape. 
[The spijrits of the hol[y] of holies, the living 'gods', [ttie spir]its of 

[eflernal holiness above all the holy [ones]; 

... marvellous marvel, majesty and beauty and marvel. 

[GI]ory is in the perfect light of Icnowledge ... in all the marvellous 

The divine spirits suriDund ttie dwelling of the King of truth and 
righteousness; all its walls ... 

4Q403 I, ii, 6-29 

... and from among them run 'gods' with the appearance of coals of 
[fire] ... wall<ing round about, most holy spirits ... Holy of Holies, divine 
spirits, ever(lasting] appearances ... and divine spirits, forms of flaming 
fire round about it ... wonderful spirits. And the chief dwelling on high, 
the glory of His kingdom, the innermost sanctuary ... And He 
consecrates the seven elevated holy places. And a voice of blessing 
(comes) from the chiefs of His Innermost sanctuary ... And a glorious 
voice of blessing ... is heard by God (the 'gods') and the foundations ... 
of blessing. And all the ornaments of the innermost sanctuary burst into 
wonderful prayers in the Innermost sanctuary ... of wonder, one 
innermost sanctuary to another, by the voice of holy crowds, and all 
their ornaments ... And the chariots of His innermost sanctuary will utter 
praises together and their cherubim and wheels will bless wonderfully 
the chiefs of the 'godiy figure and will bless Him in the holy innermost 
sanctuary, vacat 

For the Master. Song of the holocaust for the eighth Sabbath on the 
tw[enty]-third [of the second month]. 
[Praise the God of all the highest heights, all the txjly ones for ever] 

and ever, 

they who are second among the priests of the Inner Temple, the 
second council in the wonderful dwelling, with seven words of ... 

Extol Him, O sovereign Princes, in his marvellous portion, praise 
[the God of gods, O you seven priesthoods of His inner Temple]. 
... height, the seven wonderful domains by ttie precept concerning 

His sanctuaries. 

Tlie sovereign Princes of the [wonderful] priest[hood] ... tine seven 
priest[hoods] in the wonderful sanctuary for seven councils of holiness 
... the Prince, the angels of the King in the wonderful dwellings. The 
knowledge of their understanding is for seven ... Prince from the priest 
of the inner Temple. The Princes of the congregation of the King in the 
assembly of ... and praises of exaltation to the King of glory and a 
tower of ... for the God of gods, the King of purity. The offering of their 
tongues ... the seven mysteries of knowledge in the wonderful mystery 
of the seven domains [of] the Ho[ly of holies] ... [The tongue of the first 
shall be seven times stronger than the tongue of the second; the 
tongue of the second shall be] seven times [stronger] than that of the 
third; [the to]ngue of the thi[rd shall be] seven tim[es] stronger [than that 
of the fourth; the tongue of the fourth shall be seven times stronger than 
the tongue of the fifth; the tongue of the fifth shall be seven times 
stronger than the tongue of| the sixth; the tongu[e of the sixth shall be 
seven times stronger than the] t[ongue of the seventh]; the tongue of 
the seventh shall be [seven times] stronger [than the tongue of the 
eighth] ... 

4Q405 14-15, i 

... tongue of blessing from the likeness [of the gods] issues a [v]oice of 
blessing for the King of those who exalt, and their wonderful praise is 
for the God of gods ... their many-coloured ... and they sing ... the 
vestibules by which they enter, the spirits of the most holy Inner Temple 
... [And the llkenejss of the living 'gods' is engraved on the vestibules 
by which the King enters, luminous spiritual figures ... [K]ing, figures of 
a glorious Ipght, wonderful] spirits; [amojng the spirits of splendour 
there are works of (art of) marvellous colours, figures of the living 
'gods' ... [in the] glorious innermost Temple chambers, the structure of 
[the most ho]ly [sanctuary] in the innermost chambers of the King, 
design[s of 'go] ds' ... likeness of ... most holy ... [the Temple] 
chambers of the Ki[ng] ... figur[es of the 'g]o[ds' and from] the likeness 

.. of the Holy of Holies .. 

4Q405 19 ABCD (IIQ17 vii, 5-6) 

The figures of the 'gods' shall praise Him, [the most] h[oly] spirits ... of 
glory; the floor of the marvellous innermost chambers, the spirits of the 
eternal gods, all ... fi[gures of the innermost] chamber of the King, the 
spiritual works of the marvellous firmament are purified w/ith salt, 
[spi]rits of knowledge, truth [and] righteousness in the holy of [hollies, 
[f]orms of the living 'gods', forms of the illuminating spirits. All their 
[works (of art)] are marvellously linked, many-coloured [spirits], artistic 
figures of the 'gods', engraved all around their glorious bricks, glorious 
figures on b[ri]cks of splendour and majes[ty]. All their works (of art) 
are living 'gods', and their artistic figures are holy angels. From 
beneath the marvellous inner[most chambers] comes a sound of quiet 
silence: the 'gods' bless ... the King ... 

4Q405 20 ii, 21—2 

... His glorious chariots. When they go ... they do not turn aside ... but 
advance straight ... 

For the IVIas[ter. Song of the holocaust of] the twelfth [S]abbath [on 
the twenty-first of the third month.] 

[Praise the God of... w]onder, and exalt Him ... of glory in the te[nt of 
the God of] knowledge. The [cheru]bim prostrate themselves before 
Him and bless. As they rise, a whispered divine voice [is heard], and 
there is a roar of praise. When they drop their wings, there is a 
[whispere] d divine voice. The cherubim bless the image of the throne- 
chariot above the firmament, [and] they praise [the majes]ty of the 
luminous firmament beneath His seat of glory. When the wheels 
advance, angels of holiness come and go. From between His glorious 
wheels, there is as it were a fiery vision of most lx>ly spirits. About 

them, the appearance of rivulets of fire in the iii<eness of gleaming 
brass, and a work of ... radiarK« in many-coloured glory, marvellous 
pigments, clearly mingled. The spirits of the living 'gods' move 
perpetually with the glory of the marvellous chariot(s). The whispered 
voice of blessing accompanies the roar of their advance, and they 
praise the Holy One on their way of return. When they ascend, they 
ascend marvellously arxl when they settle, theystarxl still. The sound of 
joyful praise is silenced and there is a whispered blessing of the 'gods' 
in all the camps of God. And the sound of praise ... from among all 
their divisions ... and all their numbered ones praise, each in his turn. 

4Q405 23 i 

... his whole-offering. The 'gods' praise Him [when they take] up their 
station, and aii the s[pirits of] the clear firm[am]ent rejoice in His glory. 
A sound of blessing (is heard) from all His divisions speaking of the 
firmaments of His giory, and His gates praise with a resounding voice. 
When the gods of knowledge enter by the doors of glory, and when the 
holy angels depart towards their realm, the entrance doors and the 
gates of exit proclaim the glory of the King, blessing and praising all 
the spirits of God when they depart and enter by the gates. None 
among them skips over a precept, nor do they ... against the saying of 
the King ... They run not away from the path, nor siip away from His 
domain. They are neither too high for His commission nor too lowly 
For He shaii be compassionate in the realm of His furious, destr[oying 
angejr; He will not judge in the provinces of His glorious wrath. The fear 
of the King of 'gods' is awe-inspiring to [aljl the 'gods', [and they 
undertake] all His commissions by virtue of His true order, and they go 

4Q405 23 ii 

... At their marvellous stations are spirits, many-coloured like the wori< 
of a weaver, splendid engraved figures. In the midst of a glorious 
appearance of scarlet, colours of the most holy spiritual light, they hold 
to their holy station before [the K]ing, spirits of [pure] colours in the 
midst of an appearance of whiteness. The likeness of the glorious 
spirit is like a work (of art) of sparkling fine gold. All their pattern is 
clearly mingled like the work (of art) of a weaver. These are the 
Princes of those marvellously clothed for service, the Princes of the 
kingdom, the kingdom of the holy ones of the King of holiness in all the 
heights of the sanctuaries of His glorious kingdom. The Princes in 
charge of offerings have tongues of knowledge, [arxl] they bless the 
God of knowledge among all His glorious works ... 

IIQ17 viii 

... their [mar]vellous marvels by the power of the God of [eter]nity; and 
they shall exalt the mighty deeds of the G[od] ... From the four 
foundations of the marvellous firmament they shall pr[oclaim] 
soundlessly (?) a divine oracle ... wall. They bless and praise the God 
of gods ... 

Poetic Fragments on Jerusalem and 'King' 

(4Q448 ) 

Written in a very difficult semi-cursive script, tliis text lias been 
brilliantly deciphered byAda Yardeni and edited by Esther and Hanan 


The top part of the fragment, or column A, preserving the first two or 
three words often lines, is an unknown Halleluiah psalm. However, the 
last three lines have been identified by E. Eshel, as well as by M. 
Kister, as belonging to the last verses of Psalm 154, included in the 
Psalms Scroll from 11 Q, and partly reconstructed from the Syriac (cf 
J. A. Sanders, DJD, IV, col. XVIII, lines 14-16), and ending with an 
allusion to God's presence inZion-Jerusalem (cf p. 307). 

Column B, with its nine lines, is complete. It opens with a reference 
to the 'Holy City, associated with 'King' Jonathan, but the main theme 
appears to be a blessing of God's kingdom and name on behalf of the 
entire people of Israel. Note that Column A also ends with a mention of 

Column C, with the second half of each of its nine lines missing, also 
mentions Israel, together with God's name and kingdom, as well as 
what seems to be 'the day of war'. The editors believe that they can 
read 'Jonathan' in line 8, but this is far from certain. 

4Q448 is a unique and significant Qumran text of historical 
importance. The editors assume that King Jonathan is Alexander 
Jannaeus or Yannai, i.e. a Hasmonaean rulerwho, as a general rule, is 
presumed by scholars to have been hostile to the Qumran Community. 
They conjecture, therefore, that4Q448 is not a sectarian composition. I 
prefer, by contrast, to identify 'King' Jonathan as Jonathan 
Maccabaeus at thie start of his political-military career, wfien he was 
celebrated as the liberator of the Jews and of Jerusalem, and link this 

texl to the statement of the Habakkuk Commentary in VIII, 8-9, 
conoeming the good behaviour 'when he first arose' of the ruler who 
was to become the Wicked Priest. The identification of 'King 
Jonathan' with Jonathan Maccabaeus proposed by me is shared also 
by E. Puech. The name 'Jonathan' appears without context on a badly 
damaged fragment designated 4Q523; see E. Puech, DJD, XXV, 75- 
83. The script is dated to 1 50-1 25 BCE, which would suggest ttiat the 
person in question is the Maccabee brottier rather than Alexander 
Jannaeus (103-76 BCE). 

For the editio princeps, see Esther Eshel, Hanan Eshel and Ada 
Yardeni, DJD, XI, 403-25; see also G. Vermes, 'The So-called King 
Jonathan Fragment (4Q448)', JJSAA (1993), 294-300. 

Column A 

Halleluiah. Psal[m ... ] Thou hast loved as a father ... Thou hast acted 
as a prince over ... vacat And those who ha[te Thee... ] fear ... The 
many announce... fear ... And for those who are perfect... [Behold the 
eyes of the Lord have compassion on the good, and His mercy] is 
[great] over those who glorify Him. [From an evil time He saves their 
soul. He redeems] the poor from the hand of oppressors, [and delivers 
the perfect from the hand of the wicked. He desires] his tabernacle in 
Zion, (and) ch[ooses Jerusalem for ever]. 

Column B 

Holy City for King Jonathan and for all the congregation of Thy people 
Israel, who are in ttie four comers of heaven. IVlay the peace of ttiem all 
be on Thy kingdom! IVlay Thy name be blessed. 

Column C 

I will ... [in] Thy love ... during the day and until the evening... to draw 
near to be ... to visit them for a blessing... on Thy name which is 
invoked ... l<ingdom to be blessed... [o]n t[he] day war... to King 
Jonathan (?) ... 

Hymn of Glorification A and B 

(4Q491,fr. 11 ^0471 b) 

Two different versions of the same poem have been preserved. The 
first was originally thought to be part of the War Scroll (M^, 4Q491 , fr 
11) and was identified as 'The Song of Michael and the Just' by its 
editor, M. Baillet. The editor of the second text, Esther Eshel, proposes 
the more likely interpretation that the speaker of the hymn is the 
eschatological high priest, first humiliated by his opponents before 
sharing the glory of the 'gods' or 'holy ones'. The troubled career of the 
last priest is also alluded to in the Aramaic Testament of Levi (4Q541 , 
fr. 9). 

Forthe editio phnceps, see M. Baillet, DJD, VII, 26-30 (4Q491 ) and 
E. Eshel, DJD,XX\, 421 -32 (4Q471 b). 

Glorification Hymn A (4Q491, fr. 11) 

... the righ[teo]us exult [in the streng]th of His might and the holy ones 
rejoice in ... in righteousness ... He has established it in Israel 
Since ancient times His truth and the mysteries of His wisdom (have 
been) in al[l] ... power 

... and the council of the poor into an eternal congregation 
... the perfect... [eflernity a throne of strength in the congregation of 
gods' so that not a single king of old shall sit on it, neither shall their 
noble men... 

My glory is incomparable, and apart from me none is exalted. 
None shall come to me for I dwell in ... in heaven, and there is no... 
I am reckoned with the 'gods' and my dwelling-place is in the 
congregation of holiness. 

[My] des[ire] is not according to tlie flesli, [and] aii tliat I vaiue is in tlie 
giory of... [... the pi]ace of lioiiness. 

Wlio is counted despicable on my account, and wtxj is comparable to 
me in my giory? 

Wlio is iil<e... tlie young (?) iii<e me? 

Is there a companion who resembles me? There is none! 

I have been taught and no instruction resembles [my instruction] ... 

Who shall attack me when [l| op[en my mouth]? And who can contain 

the issue of my lips? 

Who shall summon me to be destroyed by my judgement? ... 

[F]or lam reckoned with the 'gods', and my glory is with the sons of the 


No pure gold or gold of Ophir ... 

Glorification Hymn B 


I am reckoned with the 'gods' and my dwelling-place is in the 
congregation of holiness. 

Who is counted as me to be despised and who is despised as me? 

And who is like me, forsaken [by men (tea. liii, 3), and is there] a 

companion who resembles me? 

And no instruction resembles my instruction. [For] I sit... 

Who is like me among the 'gods'? 

[And who shall attack me when I open my mouth]? 

And who can contain the issue of my lips? 

And who [shall summon me to be destroyed by my judgement]? 

[For I am] the beloved of the King and the friend of the ho[ly ones]. 

[No-one] ... and no-one is comparable [to my glory]. 

For I [have my station with the 'gods', and my glory is with the sons of 

the King]. 

I will not be cr[owned with pure gold nor with the gold of Ophir] . 

C. Calendars, Liturgies and Prayers 

'Phases of the Moon', Israel Antiquities Authority 

Calendars of Priestly Courses 

(4Q320-30, 337) 

Twelve fragmentary manuscripts from Cave 4, palaeographically dated 
to ttie late second century BCE, present in various forms the peculiar 
'solar' calendar - constructed in six-year sequences - of the Qumran 
Community Their year consisted of twelve months of thirty days each, 
plus four extra days added to each of the four seasons (cf. above, pp. 
78-9). Some documents from 4Q (320 and 321) attempt to combine 
this calendar with the various priestly courses which served in turn in 
the Temple for a week at a time from one sabbath to the following 
Friday They also combine it with the dates of the full moon given 
according to the days of the week of duty of the priestly course, the 
date of the solar month and the equivalent date of the lunar calendar of 
mainstream Judaism (a year of twelve months of 29 or 30 days = 354 
days). E.g. (The full moon falls): 'On the 5th (day) in the week of 
Jedaiah, corresponding to the 29th day of the lunar month, which falls 
on the 30th day of the 1st solar month.' 4Q321 records in addition the 
occurrence of the New Moon. E.g. 'And the New Moon is on the third 
day in the week of Mijamin which is on the twelfth day in the eighth 
month.' An alternative interpretation suggests that the term in question 
(duqah) designates the day after the full moon. 4Q321a is very 
fragmentary, but it seems almost identical to 4Q321 . 

For the editio princeps, see S. Talmon with J. Ben-Dov, DJD, XXI, 

The following table will help readers understand the relationship 
between the priestly courses on weekly duty, the 'solar' dates, the 
moon's phases and the feast-days falling in the month in question. 
First month of the first year in a six-year cycle Sigia: bold 
number=feast; '=New Moon; ''"''=full moon 

S* M T W n F St Cmne Fma 

1^^ 2 3 4 Gamul 

5678 9 10 ■ I Delaiah 

II 13 14 15 16 17' in Maaziih FmonrCmi 

19 ao XI 11 23 34 15 Joiarib 

a( 17 >• a» 30" >dridi WMvoftkeShMf 

Mishmarot A (4Q320) 

Fr. 1 i 

I ... to show it from the east. [And] to cause it to shine [in] the middle of 
heaven, in the foundation [of the creat]ion, from evening till morning. 
(There is full moon) 

On the 4th (day) in the week [of the sons of G]amul in the first month 
of [f/7e firs]tyear. 

[On the 5th (day) in (the week of) Jedai]ah, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the lunar month, which falls) on the 30th (day) of the 1st 
(solar month). 

[On the sabbath in (the week of) Hak]koz, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the lunar month, which falls) on the 30th of the second 
(solar month). 

[On the 1st (day) in (the week of) Elia]shib, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the lunar month), (which falls) on the 29th (day) in the third 
(solar month). 

[On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Bilg]ah, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the lunar month, which falls) on the 28th day in the fourth 
(solar month). 

[On the 4th (day) In (the week of) Petajhiah, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the lunar month which falls) on the 27th day in the fifth 
(solar month). 

On the 6th (day) in (the week of) Delaiah, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the lunar month which falls) on the 27th (day) in the sixth 
(soiar month). 

[On the sabbath in (the weel< of) Seori]m, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the iunar month which fails) on the 25th (day) in the seventh 
(soiar month). 

[On the 2nd (day) in (the week of) Abiah, (corresponding) to the 
3]oth (day of the iunar month which fails) on the 25th (day) in the eighth 
(soiar month). 

[On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Jakim, (corresponding) to the 2]9th 
(day of the iunar month which falls) on the 24th (day) in the ninth (soiar 

II On the 5th (day) in (the week of) immer, (corresponding) to the 30th 
(day of the iunar month which falls) on the 23rd (day) in the tenth (soiar 

On the 6th (day) in (the week of) Jehezekel, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the iunar month which fails) on the 22nd (day) in the 
eleventh (solar) month. 

On the 1 St (day) in (the week of) Jelarlb, (corresponding) to the 30th 
(day of the lunar month which falls) on the 22nd (day) in the twelfth 
(solar) month. 

The second year. 

On the 2nd (day) in (ttie week of) IVIalchiah, (corresponding) to ttie 29th 
(day of the lunar month which fells) on the 20th (day) in ttie first (solar 

On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Jeshua, (corresponding) to the 30th 
(day of the lunar month which falls) on the 20th (day) in the second 
(solar month). 

On the 5th (day) in (the week of) Huppah, (corresponding) to the 
29th (day of the lunar month which falls) on the 19th [in the third] 

On the sabbath in (ttie week of) Pizzez, (corresponding) to the 30th 
(day of the lunar month which falls) on the 18th inthef[ourth] (month). 

On the 1st (day) in Gamul, (corresponding) to the [29th (day of the 
lunar month which falls) on the 1 7th day in the fifth] (solar month). 

On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Jedaiah, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the iunar month which faiis) [on the 1 7th (day) in the sixth] 
(soiar month). 

On the 4th (day) in (the weel< of) iVIijamin, (corresponding) to the 2 
[9th (day of the lunar month which falls) on the 1 5th day] in the seventh 
(soiar month). 

On the 6th (day) in Shecaniah, (corresponding) to the 3[oth (day of 
the iunar month which falls) on the 15th (day) In the eighth] (soiar 

On the sabbath in (the weel< of) Bii[gah, (corresponding) to the 29th 
(day of the lunar month which falls) on the 14th (day) In the ninth] (soiar 

[On the 2nd (day) in (the weei< of) Petahiah, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the iunar month which faiis) on the 13th (day) in the tenth] 
(soiar month). 


On the 1st (day) in (the weel< of) Je[shua, (corresponding) to the 29th 
(day of the iunar month which faiis) on the 5th (day) in the seventh] 
(soiar month). 

On the 3rd (day) in (the weel< of) Huppah, (corresponding) to the 
30th (day of the iunar month which faiis) on the 5th (day) in the eighth 

On the 4th (day) in (the weel< of) Hezir, (corresponding) to the 29th 
(day of the iunar month which faiis) on the 4th (day) in the ninth (soiar 

On the 6th (day) in Jachin, (corresponding) to the 30th (day of the 
iunar month which faiis) on the 3rd (day) in the tenth (soiar month). 

On the sabbath in (the weei< of) Jedaiah, (corresponding) to the 29th 
(day of the iunar month which faiis) on the 2nd (day) of the eleventh 
(soiar) month. 

On the 2nd (day) [of iVIijamijn, (corresponding) to the 30th (day of the 
iunar month which faiis on) the second day in the twelfth (soiar) month. 


II ... the days, the sabbaths [and] the months [for] years and for 
sabbatical years and for jubilees. On the 4th (day) of the week of the 
sons of Gamul. 

Fr. 4 iii 

III The first year its feasts. On the third (day in the week of) Meoziah; 
the Passover. 

On the 1st (day) [in (the week of) Jedapah]: the Waving of the 

On the 5th (day) in (the week of) Seorim: the [Second] Passover. 

On the 1 St (day) i n (the week of) Jeshua: the Feast of Weeks. 
On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Meoziah: the Day of l\/lemorial. 
[On] tfie 6th (day) in Jeiarib: the Day of Atonement [in the] seventh 
[month], vacat 

[On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Jedajiah: the Feast of 

The second (year): its feasts. [On the 3rd (day)] in (the week of) 
Seorim: the Passov[er]. 
[On the 1st (day)] in (the week of) Mijamin: the Waving of the [Sheaf]. 
[On the 5th (day) in (the week of) Abiah: the Second Passover]. 


IV On the 1 st (day) [in (the week of) H]uppah: [the Feast of W]eeks. 
On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Seorim: the Day of IVIem[orial]. 

On the 6th (day) in (the week of) Malchia[h]: the Day of Ato[nement]. 
On [the 4th (day) in (the week of)] Mijamin: the Feast of Tabernacles. 

The third (year): its leasts. On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Abiah: 
the Passover. 

On the 21st (day) in (the week of) Shecaniah: the Waving of the 

On the 5th (day) in (the week of) Jakim: the [Second] Passover. 
On the 1 St (day) i n (the week of) iHezi r: [the Feast of Weeks]. 
On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Abiah: the Day of Memorial. 
On the 6th (day) i n (the week of) Jeshua: the Day of Atonement. 
On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Shecaniah: the Feast of 

Thefourth{year): its feasts. 

V [On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Jaki]m: the Passover. 

On the 1st (day) [in (the week of) Jeshebeab: the Waving of the 

On [the 5th (day) in (the week of) im]mer: the Second Passover. 
[On the 1 St (day) in (the week of) Piz]zez: [the Feast] of Weeks. 
[On] the 4th (day) in (the week of) Jakim: the Day of iVIemoriai. 
[On] the 6th (day) in (the week of) Huppah: the Day of Atonement. 
[On the 4th] (day) in (the week of) Jeshebeab: the Feast of 
Tabernacies. vacat 

[The fifth (year): its feasts.] 

On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) immer: the Passover. 
On the 1st (day) in (the week of) Pizzez: the Waving of the Sheaf. 
[On the 5th (day)] in (the week of) Jehezekel: the Second Passover. 
[On the 1 St (day) in (the week of) Joiari]b: the Feast of [Weeks]. 
[On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Immer: the Day of Memorial]. 

VI On the 6th (day) in (the week of) Hezir: the Day of Atonement. 

On the 4th (day) in (the week of) Pizzez: the Feast of Tabernacles. 

The sixth (year): its feasts. 

On the 3rd (day) in (the week of) Jehezekel: the Passovfer]. 

On the 1st (day) in (the week of) Gamul: the Waving of the Sheaf. 
[On the 3rd (day)] in (the weel< of) Maaziah: the [Second] Passover. 
On the 1 St (day) in (the weel< of) IVIalchiah: the Feast of [Weel<s]. 
[On] the 4th (day) in (the weel< of) Jehezel<e[l: the Day of Memorial]. 
[On] the 6th (day) in (the weel< of) Jachin; [the Day of Atonement. 
On the 4th (day) in (the weel< of) Gamul: the Feast of Tabernacles] ... 

Mishmarot B (4Q321, fr. 1) 

I [And the New Moon is on the 1st (day) in (the week of) Jedaiah which 
is on the twel]fth (day) in it (=the seventh month). 

On the second (day) in (the week of) Abia[h which is on the] twe[nty- 
fifth (day) in the eighth (month). 

And the New IVIoon is on the third (day) in (the week of) Mijamin 
which is on the twelfth (day)] in (the eighth month). 

On the third (day) in (the week of) Jakim which is on the [twenty]-fou 
[rth (day) in the ninth (month). 

And the New Moon is on the fourth (day) in Shecaniah which is on 
the eleve]nth (day) in (the ninth month). 

On the fifth (day) in (the week of) Immer which is on the thirteenth 
(day) in the ten[th (month). 

And the New Moon is on the sixth (day) in (the week of) Je]shabeab 
[which is on the tenth (day) in (the tenth month)]. 

On [the sjixth (day) in (the week of) Jehezekel which is on the twenty- 
second (day) in the eleventh (month). 

And [the New Moon is on sabbath in (the week of)] Petahiah which 
is [on the ninth (day) in (the eleventh month)]. 

On the first (day) in (the week of) Joiarib which is on the twenty- 
second (day) in the twelfth month. 

And [the New Moon is on the secon]d (day) in (the week of) Delaiah 
[which is on the ninth (day) in (the twelfth month)], vacat 

[The] second (year), the first (month). 

On the second (day) in (the week of) Malchiah which is on the 
twen[tieth (day) in the first (month). 

And] the New Moon [is on the third (day) in (the week of) Harim 
which is on the sejventh (day) in (the first month). 

On the fourth (day) in (the weel< of) Jeshua which is [on] the twentieth 
(day) in the second (month). 

And [the New IVIoon is on the fifth (day) in (the week of)] Hakkoz 
which is on the ninth (day) [in (the second month). 

On the fifth (day) in (the week of) Huppah which is on the nine]teenth 
(day) in the third (month). 

And the New iVlo[on] is on the sixth (day) [in (the week of) E]i[iashib] 
which is on the sixth (day) [in (the third month). 

On the sabba]th in (the week of) Pizzez 


II [which is on the eighteenth (day) in the fourth (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the first (day) in (the week of) Immer which 
is on the fifth (day)] in (the fourth month). 

On the first (day) in (the week of) [Gamul, which is on the 
seventeenth (day) in the fifth (month)]. 

[And the New iVIoon is on the second (day) in (the week of) 
Je]hezek[ei which is on the fourth (day) in (the fifth month). 

On the third (day) in (the week of) Jed]aiah which is on [the 
seventeenth (day) in the sixth (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the fourth (day)] in (the week of) Maoziah 
which is on the fourth (day) in (the sixth month). 

On the fourt[h (day) in (the week of) Mijamin which is on the fifteenth 
(day)] in the seventh (month). 

And the New IVIoon is on the f[ifth (day)] in (the week of) Seorim 
which is on the second in (the seventh month). 

On the sixth (day) in (the week of) Shecaniah which is on the 
fif[teenth (day) in the eighth (month). 

And the New] IVIoon is on the sabbath in Abiah which is on the 
second (day) in (the eighth month). [On the sabbath in (the week of) 
Bilgah] which is on the fourteenth (day) of the ninth (month). 

And the New Moon is [on the first (day)] in the ninth month. 

And the second [New Moo]n is on the third (day) in [(the week of) 
Hezir, which is on the thirty]-first in [(the ninth month). 

On] the second (day) in (the weel< of) Petahiah which is on the 
thir[teenth (day) in the tenth (month)]. 

And the New Moon is on the fourt[h (day) in (the weel< of) Ja]chin 
which is on the twenty-nin[th (day) in (the tenth month)]. 

On [the third (day) in (the weel< of) Delaijah whicli is on the tweifth 
(day) in the eie[venth month. 

And the New] iVIoon is on the sixth (day) in (the week of) Joiarpb 
which is on the tw]enty-ninth (day) in [(the eleventh month)]. 

On the fifth (day) in (the week of) Harim which Is on the tweifth (day) 
of the twelfth month. And the New Moo[n] is on the sabbath [in (the 
week of)] Mijamin which is on the twenty-eighth (day) in (the tweifth 
month). Ttie third (year). The [first] (month). [On the sixth (day) In (the 
week of) Hakkoz which is on the tenth (day)] in the first (month). 


III And the New iVIoon is on the second (day) in (the week of) 
Shecaniah which is on the twenty-seventh (day) in (the first month). 

On the first (day) in (the week of) Jakim which is on the tenth (day) in 
the second (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the third (day) in (the week of) Jeshebeab 
which is on the twenty-sixth (day) in (the second month). 

On the second (day) in (the week of) Immer which is on the ninth 
(day) in the third (month). 

And the New Moon is on the fifth (day) in (the week of) Pizzez which 
is on the twenty-sixth (day) in (the third month). 

On the fourth (day) in (the week of) Jehezekel which is on the eighth 
(day) in the fourth (month). 

And the New Moon is on the sixth (day) in (the week of) Gamul which 
is on the twenty-fourth (day) in (the fourth month). 

On the fifth (day) in (the week of) Meoziah which is on the seventh 
(day) in the fifth (month). 

And the New Moojn is on the first (day) in (the week of) Har[im which 

is on the twenty-fourt]h (day) in (the fifth month). 

On the sabbath in (the weel< of) Mal[chiah which is on the seventh 
(day) of the sixth (month). 

And the New Moon is on the second (day) in (the weel< of) Hal<l<oz 
which is on the twenty-third (day) in (the sixth month). 

On the first (day) in (the weel< of) Jeshua which is on the fifth (day)] in 
the seventh (month). 

And the New Moon on the fourth (day) in (the weel< of) Eliashib 
which is on the [twenty-]second (day) [in (the seventh month). 

On the third (day) in (the weel< of) Huppah which is on the fifth (day) 
in the eighth (month). 

And ttie New Moon is in the fifth (day) in (the weel< of) Biigah which 
is on the twenty-first (day) in] (the eighth month). 

On the fourth (day) in (the weel< of) Hezir which is on the fourth (day) 
in the ninth (month). 

And the New Moon is on the sabbath in (the weel< of) J[ehezel<ei 
which is on the twenty-first (day) in (the ninth month). 

On the sixth (day) in (the weel< of) Jachin which is on the third (day) 
in the tenth (month). 

And the New Moon is on the first (day) in (the weel< of) Maaziah 
which is on the nine]teenth in (the tenth month). 

On the sabbath in (the weel< of) Jedaiah which is on the second 
(day) in the eieventh month. 

And the New Moon is [on the third (day) in Seorim which is on the 
nineteenth (day) in (the eieventh month). 

On the second (day) in (the weel< of) Mijamin which is on the second 
(day) in the tweifth month. 

And the New] Moon is on the fourth (day) in (the week of) Abiah 
which is on the eighteenth (day) in (the tweifth month). 

The fourth (year). 

On the fourth (day) in (the weel< of) Shecan[iah which is on the first 
(day) in the first month]. 

And the New Moon is on the sixth (day) in (the weel< of) Jal<im which 
is on the seventeenth (day) in (the first month). 

[On the fifth (day) in (ttie weel< of) Pizzez which is on the thirtieth 

(day) in] the first (montli). 

On the sabbath [in (the week of)] Petahiah which is on the thirtieth of 
the second month. 

And the New Moon is on the first (day) in (the weel< of) Hez[ir which 
is on the seventeenth (day) in it. On the first (day) in (tfie week) of 
Deiaiah, which is on the twenty-ninth] 


I [On the fifth (day) in the (week) of Jakim which is on the seventh (day) 
in the fifth (month). 

And the N]ew iVIoon is on the first (day) in [(the week of) Biig]ah 
which is on the twe[nty-f|ou[r]th (day) in (the fifth month). 

On the sabbath in (the week of) Hezir which is on the sevent[h (day) 
in the sixth (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the second (day) in (the week of) Petahiah] 
which is on the twenty-third (day) in (the sixth month). 

On the first (day) in (ttie week of) Jachin which is on the fifth (day) in 
the seventh (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the fourth (day) [in (the week of) Deiaiah 
which is on the twenty-second (day)] in (the seventh month). 

On the third (day) in (the week of) Joiarib which is on the fifth (day) in 
the eighth (month). 

And the New iVloon is on the fifth (day) in (the week of) Harim [which 
is on the twenty-first (day) in the eighth month. 

On the fou]rth (day) in (the week of) IWalchiah which is on the fourth 
(day) in the ninth (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the sabbath in (the week of) Abiah which is 
on the [twenty-]first (day) in ([the ninth month). 

On the sixth (day) in (ttie week of) Je]shua which is [on] the third 
(day) in the tenth (month). 

And the New iVIoon is on the first (day) in (the week of) Jakim which 
is on the nineteenth (day) in [(the tenth month). 

On the sabbath in (the week of) Jeshebeab which is on the second 
(day) of the eiev]enth month. 

And the New Moon is on the thi[rd (day) in (the weel< of) Immer] 
which is on the nineteenth (day) in (the eieventh month). 

[On the second (day) in (the week of) Pizzez which is on the second 
(day) in the twei]fth month. 

And the New Moon is on the four[th (day) in (the weel< of) Jehezel<]ei 
which is on the eighteenth (day) [in the twelfth month.] vacat ... (First 

[in the first] month in (the weel< of) Gamui; [on the thir]d (day) in (the 
weel< of) Ma[aziah: Passover. In (the week of) Jedaiah: the Waving of 
the Sheaf The (first day) of the second (month) is in (the week of) 
Jedaiah; in (the week of) Seorim: the Second Passover. (The first day 
of the) third (month is) in (the week of Hakkoz.] 

V in Jeshua: the Feast of Week[s] is in it. 

[The fou]r[th (month begins) in (the week of) E]iiashib. 

The fifth (month begins) in [(the week of) Biigah. 

The sixth (month begins) in (the week of) J]ehezekei. 

The seve[nth (month begins) in (the week of) Maoziah]. In Maoziah is 
the Day of iVIemoriai. in Joiarib is the Day of Atonement. In Jedaiah is 
[the Feast of] Tabernacies. 

The eighth (month begins) [in (the week of) Seorim]. 

The ninth (month begins) in (the week of) Jeshua. 

The tenth (month begins) in (the week of) Huppah. 

The eieventh (month begins) in (the week of) Hezir. 

The twelfth (month begins) in (the week of) Gamui. vacat 

The second (year). 

The first (month begins) in (the week of) Jedaia[h]. In (ttie week of) 
Seorim is the Passover. In (the week of) iVIijamin is the Waving of the 

The second (month begins) in (the week of) i\/l[ijamin. In (the week 
of) Abiah] is the Second Passover. 

The [third (month begins) in (the week of) E]i[iashib] and in (the week 
of) Hu[ppah] is the Feast of Weeks. 

[The] fourth (month begins) [in (the week of) B]iigah. 

The fifth (month begins) in (the weel< of) Petahiah. 

[The sixth (month begins) in (the weel< of) Maaziah. 

The seventh (month begins) in (the weel< of) Seorim. In (the week of) 
Seorim is the Da]y of Memorial. In (the week of) Malchiah [is the Day 
of| Atonement, in (the week of) Mijamin [is the Feast] of Tabemacies. 

[The eighth (month begins) in (the week of) Abiah. 

The ninth (month begins) in (the week of)] Huppah. 

The tenth (month begins) in (the week of) Hezir. 

The eleventh] (month begins) in (the week of) Jachin. 

[The twei]fth mo[nt]h (begins) [in (the week of) Jedaiah]. vacat 

The third (year). 

The first (month begins) in (the week of) IVI[i]am]in. in (the week of) 
Abiah is the Passover, in (the week of) Shecaniah is the Waving of the 

The se[cond] (month begins) in (the week of) Shecaniah and in (the 
week of) Jakim is the Second Passover. 

The third (month begins) in (the week of) Bilgah. In [(the week of) 

Fr.4— 5 

VI [is the Feast] of Week[s. 

The fourt]h (month begins) in [(the week of) Petahiah. 

The fifth (month begins) in (the week of) Deiaiah. 

The sixth (month begins) in (the week of) Seorim. 

in the seventh (month), in (the week of) Abiah is tfie D]ay [of 
Memorial. In (the week of) Jeshua] is the D[ay of Atonement. In (the 
week of) Shecania]h is the Feast of Tabernacles. 

The ei[ghth (month begins) in (the week of) Jakim. 

The ninth (month begins) in (the week of) Hezir. 

The tenth] (month begins) in (the week of) Jachin. 

The ele[venth month begins] in (the week of) Joiarib. 

[The twel]fth month (begins) in (the week of) Mij]amin. 

The fourth (year). 

The first (month begins) in (the weel< of) Shecaniah. In (the week of) 
Jal<im is the Passover. In (the week of) Jeshebeab is the Waving of 
the Sheaf. 

The second (month begins) in (the week of) Jeshebeab. In (the week 
of) lm[mer is the Second Passover. In (the week of) Jachin is the 
Fejast of [Weeks. 

The fourth (month begins) in (the week of) Delaiah. 

The fifth] (month begins) in (the week of) Harim. 

The sixth (month begins) in [(the week of) Abiah. 

The sejventh (month begins) [in (the week of) Jakim]. In (the week of) 
Jaki[m is the Da]y [of Memorial]. In (the week of) Huppah [is the Day of 
Atonement. In (the week of) Jeshebeab is the Feast of Tabernacle]s. 

The eighth (month begins) in (the week of) Immer. 

The ninth (month begins) in [(the week of) Jachin. 

The tenth (month begins) in (the week of) Joiari]b. 

The ele[vent]h [month (begins)] in (the week of) Ma[lchiah. 

The twelfth month (begins) in (the week of) Shecaniah]. vacat 
The fifth [year). 

The f[irst] (month begins) in [(the week of) Jeshebeab. In (the week of) 
Immer] is the Passover. In (the week of) Pi[zzez i]s the Waving of the 

The se[cond (month begins) in (the week of) Pizze]z. In Jehezekel is 
the Second Passover. 

The third (month begins) in [(the week of) Delaiah. In (the week of) 
Joiarib is the Feast of W]eeks. 

The f[ourth] (month begins) in (the week of) Harim. 

The fifth (month begins) in (the week of) Hakk[o]z. 

[The si]xth (month begins) in (the week of) Jakim. 

The seventh (month begins) in (the week of) Immer. In (the week of) 
Immer is the Day of Memori[al. In (the week of) Hezir is the Day of 
Atonement. In (the week of) Pi]zzez is the Feast of Tabernacles. 

The eighth (month begins) in (the week of) Jehezekel. 

The ninth (month begins) in (the week of) Joiar[ib] and the tenth 
(month begins) 


VII [in (the week of) Malchiah. 
The eleventh month (begins) in (the weel< of) Jeshua. 
The twelfth month (begins) in (the week of) Jeshebeab. 

[The sixth (year). 

The first (month begins) in (the week of) Pizzez. In (the week of) 
Jehezekel is the Passover. In (the week of) Gamul Is the Waving of the 


The second (month begins) in (the week of) Gamul. In (the week of) 
Maaziah is the Second Passover. 

The third month (begins) in (the week of) Harim. In (the week of) 
Malchiah is the Feast of Weeks. 

The fourth (month begins) in (the week of) Hakkoz. 

The fifth (month begins) in (the week of) Eliashib. The sixth (month 
begins) in (the week of) Immer. 

The seventh (month begins) in (the week of) Jehezekel. In (the week 
of) Jehezekel is the Day of IVIemorial. In (the week of) Jachin is the Day 
of Atonement. In (the week of) Gamul i]s the Feast [of Tabernacles. 

The eighth (month begins) in (the week of) Maaziah. 

The ninth (month begins) in (the week of) Malchiah. 

The tenth (month begins) in (the week of) Jeshua]. 

The eleven[th] month (begins) in (the week of) Huppah. 

[The twelfth month (begins) in (the week of) Pizzez]. 

Mishmarot D (4Q325) 

Fr. 1 

[... Passover on the thijrd (day of the week). On the eighteenth (day) in 

(the first month) is the sabbath of [(the weel< of) Joiarib] ... in the 

On the twenty-fifth (day) in (the first month) is the sabbath of (the 
weei< of) Jedaiah. During the same weel< is [the Feast] of Bariey on 
the twenty-sixth (day) in (the first month), after the sabbath. 

The beginning of the [second] month [is on the s]ixth [day] of (the 
weeic of) Jedaiah. 

On the second (day) in (the second month) is the sabbath of Harim. 

On the ninth (day) in (the second month) is the sabbath [of Seorim]. 

On the sixteenth (day) in (the second month) is ttie sabbath of 

On the twenty-third (day) in (the second month) [is the sabbath of 

On the thirtieth (day) in (the second month) is the sabbath of Hal<l<oz. 
vacafThe beginning of the third month after the sabbath 

Fr. 2 

[On the sixth (day) in (the weel< of) Bilgah. On the second (day) in (the 
fifth month) is the sabbath of Ijmmer. On the thi[r]d (day) i[n (ttie fifth 
month) is the Feast of the New Wine after the sabbath of Immer. 

On] ttie ninth (day) in (ttie fifth month) is the sabbath of Hear. [On the 
sixteenth (day) in (the fifth month) is the sabbath of Aphses. On the 
twenty-]third (day) in (the fifth month) is the sabbath [of Petahiah. 

On tlie thirtieth (day) in (the fifth month) is ttie sabbath of Jehezel<el. 
The beginnijng of the sixth month is after ttie sabbath (=Sunday) of 
Jehezel<el. On ttie seventh (day) in (the sixth month) is the sabbath of 
Jachin. On the fou]rteenth (day) [in (the sixth month) is the sabbath of 
Gamul. On the twenty-first (day) in (the sixth month) is the sabbath of 
Delaiah. On the twenty-]second (day) in (the sixth month) is the Feast 
of New Oil. After the Feast of New Oil is ttie Feast of the Offering of 

Mishmarot F (4Q328) 

[In the fifth (year): Jeshabe]ab. In the sixth: Hapizzez. 
These are the beginnings of the years. 
[In the first [year]: Gamul, Eliashpb], Moazia[h, Huppah. 
In] the second: Jedaiah, Bilgah, Se[or]im, He[zir]. 
[In the third]: IVIij[amin], Petahiah, Ab[iah, Jachin]. 
[In the fourth: Shecaniah, De]laiah, Jakim, Joia[rib. 
In the fifth: Jeshabeab, Harim, Immer, Malchiah. 
In the s[ixth: Hapizzez, ]... 

Calendrical Document C 


In the first (month) on the fourth (day) is Sabbath... 
On the eighth (day) in it [is Sabbath] ... 
On the eleventh (day) in it is Sabbath... 

[On the 14th (day) in it is Passover on the third (day of the week). 
On the 15th (day) in it: the feast of the Unleavened Bread on the 

fourth (day of the week). 
On the 18th (day) is Sabbath. 
On the 25th (day) in it: Sabbath. 

On the 26th (day) in it:] feast of the Gr[ain after the Sabbath. 

In the first month] 30 (days). 

On the second (day) in it: [Sabbath. 

On the ninth (day) in it: Sabbath. 

On the 16th (day)]... 

Calendrical Document D 
(4Q394 1-2) 

This text is line opening of IVIIVIT (Some Observances of the Law) and 
has been dealt with there (see pp. 222-3). 

Calendric Signs (Otot) 


The so-called Ototor 'Signs' document was copied as the continuation 
of 4QS^ (4Q259). Whether it was part of the original composition is as 
debatable as the attachment of a calendar to MMT at 4Q394 1-2 (cf. 
above, pp. 222-3). 

4Q319 represents a calendrical system based on the weekly 
rotation of the twenty-four priestly courses during a six-year period and 
constructed into six consecutive Jubilees, i.e. 294 years. The 'sign' 
which recurs in every three years probably identifies the years in which 
the shorter lunar year of 354 days is supplemented by means of the 
intercalation of an extra month of 30 days (3x354+30=1 ,092) to equal 
the length of three 'solar' years of 364 days each (3x364=1,092). 
Palaeographically the manuscript is dated to the first half of the first 
century BCE. 

For the editio princeps, see J. Ben-Dov, DJD, XXI, 199-244. 

Frs. 1-3 


... on the fourth (day) of the wee[k] ... 

its light on the fourth (day) of the wee[k] of the creation 

in (the week of) G[amul. 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the fourth (year). 

The sign of Gamul: in the (year) of Release (i.e. the first 

sabbatical year). 

(Second sabbatical cycle): 

[The sign of Shecaniah: in the thijrd (year). 

The sign of [G]amul; in the sixth (year). 

(Third sabbatical cycie): 

Tlie sign [of Sliecaniah: in the second (year). 

The sign of G]amui: [in the fifth (year). 

(Fourth sabbaticai cycie): 

The sig]n of Shecaniah: after the (year of) Reiease. 
The sign of Gamu[i: in the fourth (year). 
The sign of Shec]an[i]ah: 
[in the (year of) Reiease. 

(Fifth sabbaticai cycie): 

The sig]n of Gamui: in the third (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: [in the sixth (year). 

(Sixth sabbaticai cycie): 

The sign of Gam]ui: [in the second (year). 

The si]gn of She[caniah]: in the fifth (year). 

(Seventh sabbaticai cycie): 
The sign of Gam[ui: after the (year of) Reiease. 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fou]rth (year). 
The sign of Gamui: in the (year of) Reiease 
(which is) the sign of the en[d of the Jubiiee. 
The signs of the second J]ubiiee: 17 signs. 
Of this in the (year of) Reiease: [2] signs. 

...of the creation... 

[The si]gn of Shecaniah: 

in the second (year). 

[The sign of Ga]mui: in the fifth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: after the (year of) Reiease. 

[The sign of Ga]mui: 

Frs. 2—5, 9, 23 

V [in the fourth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign of Gamul: in the thinj (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the sixth (year). 

The sign of Gamul: in the second (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fifth (year). 
The sign of Gamui: after the (year of) Reieas]e. 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fo[urth (year). 
The sign of Gamui: in the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the thijrd (year). 
The sign of Gamui: in the si[xth (year) 
The sign] of Shec[aniah 

(which is) the sign] of the end of the third Jubiiee. 

The signs of the third Jubiiee: 17 signs]. 
Of this in the (year of) Reiease: 2 signs. 

[The sign] of Shecaniah: in the second year. 

[The sign of Gam]ui: in the fifth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: after the (year of) Reiease. 

The sig[n of Gamui: in the fourth (year). 

The sig]n of Shecaniah: in the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign of Gamui: in the third (year). 
The sign [of Shecaniah: in the sixth (year). 

The sign of G]amui: in the second (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fifth (year). 
The sign [of Gamui: after the (year of)] Reiease. 

The sign of Shecaniah: 

in the fourth (year). 

The sign of Gamui: [in the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign] of Shecaniah: in the third (year). 
The sign of Gamui: in the sixth (year). 

The sign of Sheo[aniah: in the second (year). 
The sign] of Gamui: in the fifth (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: after the (year of) Reiease 
[(which is) the sign of the end of the Jubilee. 

The signs of the] fourth [Jubi]iee: 17 signs. 
Of this in the (year of) Reiease: 2 signs. 

[The sign of Gamui]: in the fourth year. 

The sign of Shecaniah: [in the (year of) Rei]ease. 

The sign of Gamui: in [the third (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the sixth (year). 
The sign of Gamui]: in the second (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fi[fth (year). 
The sign of Gamui: after the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign of Shecaniah]: in the fourth (year). 
The sign of [Gamui]: in the (year of) Reiease. 

The sign of She[caniah: in the second (year). 

The sign of Gamui: in the fifth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah]: after the [(year of)] Reiease. 

The sign of Ga[mui: in the fourth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the (year of) Reiease 

(which is) the sign of the end of the fifth Jubiiee in Jeshebab. 

The signs of the fifth Jubiiee: 16 signs. 
Of this in the (year of) Reiease: 

Frs. 5-8 

VI 3 signs. 

[The sign of Gamul: in the tinird year. 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the sixth (year). 

The sign of Gamul: in] the second (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in [the fifth year]. 
The sign of Gamul: after the (year of) Rel]ease. 

[The si]gn of Shecaniah; in the fourth (year). 
The sign of Ga[mul: in the (year of) Release. 

The sign of Shecaniah]: in the third (year). 
The sign of Gamul: in the sixth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: [in the second (year). 

The sign] of Gamul: in the f[if]th (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: after [the (year of) Release. 

The si]gn of Gamul: in [the four]th (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the (year of) Relea[se. 

The sign of Gamul: in] the third (year). 
The si[gn of Shecaniah: in the s]ixth (year) 
(which is) the sign of the end of the sixth Ju[bilee. 

The signs of the sixth] Jubilee: 1 [6 signs]. 
Of this in [the (year o^ Release]: 2 signs 

and for the Jubi[lee]. 

[The sign of Gamul: in the second (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the fifth (year). 

The sign of Gamul: after] the (year of) Relea[se. 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the four]th (year). 
The sign of Gamu[i: in] the (year of) Reiea[se. 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the third (year). 
The sign] of Gamui: in the sixth (year). 

The sig[n of Shecaniah: in] the second (year). 

The si[gn of Gamui]: in the fifth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: [after] the (year of) Reiea[se. 

The sign of G]amui: in the fourth (year). 

The sign of Shecaniah: in the (year of) Re[iease. 

The sign] of Gamui: [in the thir]d (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah: in the sixth (year). 

The sign [of Gamui]: in the sec[ond (year). 
The sign of Shecaniah]: in the fifth (year) 
(which is) the sign of the end of the Jubi[iee. 

The signs of the] seventh [Jubiiee] 16 signs. 
Of this in the (year of) Reiease: [2 signs]. 

Sign of the J[ubiiees, 

ye]arof Jubiiees according to [hoiy] day[s]. 

[in Gamui the first (Jubiiee), 

in Jedaiah the] sec[ond], 

in Mijamin the third, [in Shecaniah the fourth] 

'Horoscopes' or Astrological Physiognomies 

(4Q186, 4Q534, 4Q561) 

Three documents from Cave 4, one in Hebrew and two in Aramaic, all 
dating probably to tlie end of the first century BCE, contain fragments 
of 'horoscopes' or, more precisely, astrological physiognomies 
claiming a correspondence between the features and destiny of a 
person and the configuration of the stars at the time of his birth. 

The Hebrew text, published by J. M. Allegro (4Q186), is written in a 
childish cipher. The text runs from left to right instead of the normal 
right to left and uses, in addition to the current 'square' Hebrew 
alphabet, letters borrowed from the archaic Hebrew (or Phoenician) 
and Greek scripts. The spiritual qualities of three individuals described 
in the work are reflected in their share of Light and Darkness. The first 
man is very wicked: eight parts of Darkness to a single part of Light. 
The second man is largely good: six parts of Light against three parts 
of Darkness. The last is almost perfect: eight portions of Light and only 
one of Darkness. 

As far as physical characteristics are concemed, shortness, fatness 
and irregularity of features are associated with wickedness, their 
opposites reflect virtue. 

In the astrological terminology of the document, the 'second Column' 
doubtless means the 'second House'; and a birthday 'in the foot of the 
Bull' should probably be interpreted as the presence, at that moment, 
of the sun in the lower part of the constellation Taurus. 

The first Aramaic 'horoscope' (4Q534) is, according to J. Starcky 
that of the final Prince of the Congregation, or Royal Messiah. It is just 
as likely however, that the text alludes to the miraculous birth of Noah 
and it has therefore been placed together with the other remains of 
Noah literature (cf. pp. 554-5below). 4Q561, also in Aramaic, is too 
short to allow an identification but it is unlikely to refer to Noah as the 

qualities seem to be in some middie position between good and evii. 

Wlietlier the sectaries forecast tlie future by means of astrology, or 
merely used horoscope-like compositions as literary devices, is 
impossible to decide at present, though I am inclined towards the latter 
alternative. That such texts are found among ttie Scrolls should not, 
however, surprise anyone. For if many Jews frowned on astrology, 
others, such as the Hellenistic Jewish writer Eupolemus, credited its 
invention to Abraham! (Cf. G. Vermes, Scripture and Tradition in 
Judaism,Le\den, 1973, 80-82.) 

For the texts see J. M. Allegro and A. A. Anderson, DJD, V, 88-91 ; 
J. Strugnell, RQ 7 (1970), 274-6; P. S. Alexander, in E. Schurer, G. 
Vermes, F. Millar arid M. Goodman, Ttie History of the JevistiPeople 
in ttie Age of Jesus Clirist, III, Edinburgh, 1986, 364-6. 

4Q186, fr. 1 

II ... and his thighs are long and lean, and his toes are thin and long. He 
is of the second Column. His spirit consists of six (parts) in the House 
of Light and three in the Pit of Darl<ness. And this is his birthday on 
which he (is to be/was?) born: in the foot of the Bull. He will be meek. 
And his animal is the bull. 

Ill ... and his head ... [and his cheeks are] fat. His teeth are of uneven 
length (?). His fingers are thick, and his thighs are thick and very hairy, 
each one. His toes are thick and short. His spirit consists of eight 
(parts) in the House of Darkness and one from the House of Light... 


I ... order His eyes are black and glowing. His beard is ... and it is ... 
His voice is gentle. His teeth are fine and well aligned. He is neither 
tall, nor short. And he ... And his fingers are thin and long. And his 
thighs are smooth. And the soles of his feet... [And his toes] are well 
aligned. His spirit consists of eight (parts) [in the House of Light, of] the 

second Column, and one [in the House of Darkness. And this is] his 
birthday on which he (is to be/was) born: ... And his animai is... 


... mixed but not too much. His eyes wiii be between white and biacl<. 
His nose wiii be iong and beautifui. His teeth wiii be even. His beard 
wiii be thin but not too much so. His limbs wiii be smoot[h and] 
be[tween re]duced and thicl< ... 

Phases of the Moon 


Seventy-six fragments of an astronomical text written in a cryptic 
aiptiabet record the ptiases of the moon, divided into 1/14ths of the fuii 
size of the moon, over the consecutive days of a 364-day soiar 
calendar. J. T. iVliiil< has reconstructed a fourteen-iine section, based 
onfr. 1 ii,2 — 14 and supplemented with other smaiier fragments. 

For the text, see J. T. Mi ilk. The Books of Enoch: Aramaic 
Fragments ofQumran Cave 4 (Oxford, 1 976), 68-9. 

II ... [On the fjifth (day) of it (the month), [tw]elve (fourteenths of the 
moon's surface) are covered and thus it [enters the day On the sixth 
(day) of it] thir]teen (fourteenths of its surface) are covered and thus it 
enters the day On the seventh (day) of it [fourteen (fourteenths of its 
surface)] are covered and thus] it enters the day vacat On the eighth 
(day) of it... the firmament above ... its light is to be covered ... on the 
first of the Sabbath (Sunday), vacat [On the ninth (day) of it one 
(fourteenth) portion (of its surface)] is revealed [and thus it enters the 
night]. On the tenth (day) of it [two (fourteenths of its surface)] are 
[revealed and it enters] the nigfrt. vacat On the ele[verTth (day) of it 
three (fourteenths of its surface) are revealed] and thus it enters the 
night, vacat 

A Zodiacal Calendar with a Brontologion 


A fascinating, but unfortunately fragmentary, calendar indicates the 
passage of the moon through the various Zodiacal signs during the 
successive months of the year from Nisan to Adar. The fragment 
begins w/ith the month of Tevet, continues with Tishri and ends with 
Adar. The last four lines of col. VIII have preserved a brontologion, i.e. 
prediction of prodigies or ill-omens by means of an interpretation of 
the sound of thunder on certain specified days of the month. The actual 
prediction of woe survives only at the end of the text in lines 8-9. It 
takes the form of a famine and the invasion of the country by a 
conquering foreign army. 

For the editio phnceps, see J. C. Greenfield and M. Sokoloff, DJD, 
XXXVI, 259-74. 

VII and on 13 and [1]4 [Pisces; on 15 and 16 Aries; on 17 and 18 

Taurus; on 1]9 and 20 and 2[1 Gemini; on 22 and 23 Cancer; on 24 
and 25 Leo; on 26 and] 27 and 28 [Virgo; on 29 and 30 Libra] vacat 
[Tishri. On 1 and 2 Scorpio; on 3 and 4 Sagittarius; on 5 and 6 and 7] 
Capricorn; on 8 and on 13 and 14 Cancer; on 15 and 16 Leo; on 17 
and 18 Virgo; on 19 and 20 and 21 Libra; on 22 [and 23] Scorpio; on 
24 and 25 Sagit[tarlus]; on 26 and 27 and 28 [Capricorn]; on 29 and 
30 Aquari[us]. vacat Shevat. On 1 and 2 [Piscejs; on 3 and 4 [Aries; 
on] 5 and [6 and] 7 Taums; on 8 [and 9 Gemini]; on 10 [and 11] 
Cancer; on 12 [and] 13 and 14 Leo; [on 15 and 16 Virgo]; on 17 and 
18 Libra; on 19 [and 20 and 21 S]corpio; on 22 [and] 23 [Sagifltarius; 
on 24 and 25 Capricorn; on [26 and] 27 and 28 Aquarius; on 29 and 
30 Pisces vacat 

VIII Adar. On 1 and 2 Aries; on 3 and 4 Taums; on 5 [and 6 and 7 

Gemini]; on 8 and 9 [Cancer; on 10 and 11 L]eo; on 12 and 13 [and 
14] Virg[o]; on 15 and [16 Libra; on] 17 and on 18 [Scorpio]; [on] 19 
and 20 (and 21) Sagpttarius]; on 22 and 23 [Cap]ricorn; [on 24 and 25] 
Aquarius; on 26 and 27 [and 28] Pi[sces; on 29 and 30] Aries, vacat [if 
in Taurus] it thunders ... [and] liard labour for the country and sword [in 
the cour]t of the l<ing and in the country of ... to the Arabs (?) [ ... ] 
starvation and they will piiiage one anoth[er ... ]. vacat If in Gemini it 
thunders, terror and affliction (wiii be brought) by strangers and by ... 

Order of Divine Office 


Cave 4 has yielded seven fragments of a liturgical work made up of six 
columns, listing the number of songs and words of praise to be sung 
during the night and during the day on consecutive days of the month. 
Only frs. 2-4 can be built up into a coherent text. The script is dated to 
the end of the first century BCE. 
For the editio phnceps, see U. Glessmer, DJD, XXI, 167-94. 

Frs. 2-4 

[And on the eighth (day) of it (of the month) at night: e]ight 
[so]ngs and forty-... [w]ords of prai[se, and during the day: ... 
songs and] sixtee[n wor]ds [of praise. And on the nint]h (day) of 
it at night: [eight songs and] fort[y-t]wo [words of praise, and 
during the d]ay: ... songs [and ... words of praise]. And on the 
tenth (day) of i[t] at night: eight songs [and ... words of praise, 
and during the day: ... songs] and twenty words of p[raise] ... 

The Words of the Heavenly Lights 

(4Q504— 6) 

Surviving in tliree fragmentary manuscripts from Cave 4 (4Q504-6), 
'Tlie Words of tlie Heaveniy Liglits' are coiiective prayers for tlie days 
of the week which are fuii of bibiicai reminiscences. In the best- 
preserved of them (4Q504), the Sabbath and the fourth day are 
expressiy mentioned in the surviving text. The editor of the document, 
M. Baillet (DJD, VII (1982), 137-75), attributes to it an exaggeratedly 
early date, the mid-second century BCE. 


I ...Amen! Amen! ... II ... We pray Thee, O Lord, do in accordance with 
Thyself, in accordance with the greatness of Thy might. Thou who didst 
pardon our fathers when they rebelled against Thy saying. Thou wert 
angry with them so as to wish to destroy them, but because of Thy love 
for them and for the sake of Thy Covenant - for Moses had atoned for 
their sin - and in order that Thy great might and the abundance of Thy 
mercy might be known to everlasting generations. Thou didst take pity 
on them. So let Thine anger and wrath against all [their] sin turn away 
from Thy people Israel. Remember Thy marvels which Thou didst for 
the poor of the nations. For we were called by Thy Name... to [cause] 
us [to repent] with all (our) heart and soul and to plant Thy Law in our 
heart [that we might never depart from it, straying neither] to right nor to 
left. For Thou wilt heal us of foolishness and of blindness and confusion 
[of heart... Behold] we were sold because of our iniquities but despite 
our offences Thou didst call us ... Thou wilt save us from sinning 
against Thee ... and to make us understand the testimonies ... 

III ... Behold, all the nations are as nothing beside Thee, they are 
counted as void and naught before Thee. We have called on Thy 
Name alone. Thou hast created us for Thy glory and made us Thy 
children In the sight of all the nations. For Thou tiast named Israel 'My 
son, my first-born', and hast chastised us as a man chastises his son. 
Thou tiast brought us up throughout the years of our generations [by 
means of| evil diseases, famine, thirst, pestilence, and the sword ... of 
Thy Covenant. Because Thou tiast ctiosen us [from all] the earth [to be 
Thy people,] therefore hast Tfrau poured out Thine anger [and jealousy] 
upon us in all ttie fury of Thy wrath. Thou hast caused [the scourge] of 
Thy [plagues] to cleave to us of which IVIoses wrote, and Thy servants 
the Prophets, that Thou wouldst send evil against us in the last days... 

IV ... Thy dwelling-place ... a resting-place in Jerus[alem, the city 
which] Thou hast [chosen] from all the earth that Thy [Name] might 
remain there for ever. For Thou hast loved Israel above all the peoples. 
Thou hast chosen the tribe of Judah and hast established Thy 
Covenant with David that he might be as a princely shepherd over Thy 
people and sit before Thee on the throne of Israel for ever. All the 
nations have seen Thy glory. Thou who hast sanctified Thyself In the 
midst of Thy people Israel. They brought their offering to Thy great 
Name, silver and gold and precious stones together with all the 
treasures of their lands, that they might glorify Thy people, and Zion Thy 
holy city, and the House of Thy majesty And there was neither 
adversary nor misfortune, but peace and blessing... and they ate and 
were satisfied and grew fat ... 

V ... [they forsool<] the fount of living waters... and served a strange 
god in their land. Also, their land was ravaged by their enemies; for Thy 
fury and the heat of Thy wrath overflowed, in the fire of Thy jealousy 
mal<ing of It a desert where no man could go and return. Yet 
notwithstanding all this. Thou didst not reject the seed of Jacob, neither 
didst Thou cast away Israel to destruction, breaking Thy Covenant with 
them. For Thou alone art a living God and there is none beside Thee. 
Thou didst remember Thy Covenant, Thou who didst rescue us in the 
presence of all the nations, and didst not forsal<e us amid the nations. 
Thou wert gracious towards Thy people Israel in all the lands to which 
Thou didst banish them, that they might remember to retum to Thee 

and to hearken to Thy voice [according to] all Thou hadst commanded 
by the hand of Moses Thy servant. 

For Thou hast shed Thy Holy Spirit upon us, bringing upon us Thy 
blessings, that we might seek Thee in our distress [and whisjper 
(prayers) in the ordeal of Thy chastisement. We have entered into 
distress, have been [stri]cken and tried by the fury of the oppressor. 
For we also have tired God with our iniquity, we have wearied the 
Rock with [our] sins. [But] in order that we may profit. Thou hast not 
wearied us who leadest [us] in the way in [which we must walk. But] we 
have not heeded ... 

VI ... [Thou hast taken away] all our transgressions and hast purified 
us of our sin for Thine own sake. Thine, Thine is righteousness, O 
Lord, for it is Thou who hast done aii this! Now, on the day when our 
heart is humbied, we expiate our iniquity and the iniquity of our fathers, 
together with our unfaithfulness and rebellion. We have not rejected 
Thy trials and scourges; our soui has not despised them to the point of 
breaking Thy Covenant despite all the distress of our soul. For Thou, 
who hast sent our enemies against us, strengthenest our heart that we 
may recount Thy mighty deeds to everlasting generations. We pray 
Thee, O Lord, since Thou workest marvels from everlasting to 
everlasting, to let Thine anger and wrath retreat from us. Look on [our 
affliction] and trouble and distress, and deliver Thy people Israel [from 
all] the lands, near and far, [to which Thou hast banished them], every 
man who is inscribed in the Book of Life... serve Thee and give thanks 
to [Thy holy Name] ... from those who vex them ... VII ... who deliverest 
us from all distress. Amen! [Amen!] 

Hymnsforthe Sabbath Day 

Give thanks ... 

[Bless] His holy Name always 

... all the angels of the holy firmament 

... [above] the heavens, 

the earth and all its deep places, 

the great [Abyss] and Abaddon 

and the waters and all that is [in them.] 

[Let] all His creatures [bless Him] always 
for everlasting [ages. Amen! Amen!] 
... bless His holy Name. 
Sing to God... 


II ... Blessed be the God who has given us rest. [Amen], amen. [Prayer 
on the] fourth [da]y. Remember, O Lord ... 


II ... We know these through Thy Ho[ly] Spirit which Thou hast granted 
us. [Have mercy on us] and remember us not for the iniquities of the 
men of old in all their evl[l] dealings, [nor] their stiff necks. Thou redeem 
us and, [pray,] forgive our iniquities and [our] s[ins]. 


II ... Remember, pray, that we are Thy people and that Thou hast 
carried us marvellously [on the wings of| eagles and hast brought us 
towards Ttiee. And like an eagle which rouses its nestlings and hovers 
over [its young], spreads out its wings, takes one and carries it on [its 
pinions], so we dwell apart and are not reckoned among the nations 
and ... Thou art in our midst in the pillar of fire and the cloud [of] Thy 
[holl]ness walking before us, and as It were Thy glory in our mid[st] ... 

Fr. 8 recto 

II ... [Rememb]er, O Lo[r]d that... Thou hast fashioned A[dam], our 
[f]ather, in the likeness of [Thy] glory; Thou didst breathe [a breath of 
life] into his nostrils and, with understanding, knowledge [Thou didst 

give him] ... Tliou didst mal<e [him] to rule [over the Gar]den of Eden 
which Thou didst plant... and to wail< in the larKi of glory... he guarded. 
And Thou didst enjoin him not to st[ray ...]... he is flesh and to dust [he 
will return (?)] ... And Thou, Thou knowest... for everlasting generations 
... a living God and Thy hand ... man in the ways of., [to flII the] earth 
with [v{]olenoe and to shed [innocent blood] ... 

Liturgical Prayer 

(1Q34 and 34 bis) 

The following fragments, published by J. T. Milik {DJD, I, 152-5), 
belong to a collection of prayers for Jewish festivals. The title of the 
present section is lost, but reference to the renewal of the Covenant 
seems to indicate that we have here another part of the sect's 
Pentecostal liturgy. 

I ... Thou wilt cause the wicl<ed to be our ransom and the unfaithful to 
be our redemption. |Thou wilt] blot out all our oppressors and we shall 
praise Thy Name for ever [and ever]. For this hast Thou created us and 
[to say to Thee] this: Blessed art Thou ... 

II ... the Great Light (of heaven) for the [day]time, [and the Little Light 
(of heaven) for the night] ... without transgressing their laws, ... and their 
dominion is over all the world. 

But the seed of man did not understand all that Thou caused them to 
inherit; they did not discern Thee in all Thy words and wickedly turned 
aside from every one. They heeded not Thy great power and therefore 
Thou didst reject them. For wickedness pleases Thee not, and the 
ungodly shall not be established before Thee. 

But in the time of Thy goodwill Thou didst choose for Thyself a 
people. Thou didst remember Thy Covenant and [granted] that they 
should be set apart for Thyself from among all the peoples as a holy 
thing. And Thou didst renew for them Thy Covenant (founded) on a 
glorious vision and the words of Thy Holy [Spirit], on the works of Thy 
fiands and the writing of Thy Right Hand, that they might know the 
foundations of glory and the steps towards eternity.. [Thou didst raise 
up] for them a faithful shepherd ... 

Prayers for Festivals 

(4Q 507-9) 

Three badly worn manuscripts from Cave 4 (4Q507-9) partly 
correspond to the foregoing fragments from Cave 1 (1Q34 and 34 
bis). They have preserved prayers for festivals, two of which are 
explicitly associated with the Day of Atonement and the Day of 
Firstfruits. The editor, M. Baillet (DJD, VII, 175-215), dates them to the 
beginning of the first century CE. 

4Q507, fr. 1 

We are (encompassed) by iniquity since the womb, and since the 
breast by guilt. While we live, we walk in iniquity... 

4Q508,fr. 1 (cf. 1Q34d/s) 

[And the righteous... to grow fat thanks to the clouds of heaven and the 
produce of the land, to distingui]sh the righteous from the wicked. And 
Thou Shalt make of the wicked our expiation, and by the upright Thou 
Shalt destroy all our oppressors. And we will praise Thy na[m]e for ever 
and ever. For [Thou hast created us for this] and we answer Thee with 
this: Blessed be ... 


... Prayer for the Day of Atonemerrt. Remember O Lord, the feast of 
mercies and the time of return (?)... Thou hast established it for us as a 
feast of fasting, and an everias[ting] precept ... Thou l<nowest the 
hidden things and the things reveai[ed] ... 


... Thou didst establish [Thy Covenant] with Noah ... 

4Q509, fr. 3{cf. 1Q34 bis) 

For Thou hast caused us to rejoice, removing our grief, and hast 
assembled our banished ones for a feast of... Thou shalt gather our 
dispersed w/omen for the season of ... Thy [me]rcies on our 
congregation like ra[in-drops on the earth in the season of sowing... 
and lil<e showers on the gr]ass in the seasons of sprouting and... We 
shall recount Thy marvels from generation to generation. Blessed be 
the Lord who has caused us to rejoice... 

Fr. 132 

II [Prayer for the Day of] Firstfruits. Remember, O Lord, the feast of ... 
and the pleasing free-will offerings which Thou hast commanded... [to 
brjing before Thee the firstfruits of [Thy] works ... 

Daily Prayers 

(4Q 503) 

A manuscript from Cave 4 (4Q503) consisting of 225 papyrus 
fragments, edited by IVI. Baillet {DJD, VII, 105-36), lists evening and 
morning benedictions for each day of the month. The calendar followed 
appears to be lunar since evening precedes morning. The editor 
places the writing in the first quarter of the first century BCE. 

Ill And when the sun rises... the firmament of heaven, they shall bless. 
Answering they shall say:] Blessed be the Go[d of Israel ... ] Today... in 
the fourt[h of the gates of light... ] On the fifth [of the month in the 
eve]ning, they shall bless. Answering, they shall say: Blessed be the 
God [of Israel] who hides... before him in every division of his glory... 
today the fourte[enth] ... light of the day Peace be on you, Israel ... 
[When the sun] rise[s] to illumine the earth, they shall bless, and again 
the numbe[r shall be] ele[ven days] to the feasts of joy and the 
appointed times of g[lory,] for [this d]ay is in the fifteenth of the gate[s 
of light] ... [Peace be on you,] Israel. On the sixth of the month in the 
evening, they shall bless. Answering, they shall [say]: Bles[sed be the 
God] of Israel ... And when [ttie sun rises to illumine the earth, ttiey shall 
bless. Answering, they shall say] 

Frs. 7-9 

IV ... Peace [be on you, Israel] ... On the seventh of [the month in the 
evening, they shall bless. Answering, they shall say:] Blessed be the 
God of ls[rael] ... 

Fr. 11 

[On the t]welfth of the month in the evening [they shall bless] ... (This 
probably continues up to the 26th of the month.) 

Prayer or Hymn Celebrating the Morning and the 

(4Q 408) 

One medium sized and fifteen or sixteen small fragments represent a 
collection of liturgical prayers of which only one can be partly 
translated. The document is akin to 4Q375 and 376 as well as to 
1Q29. Palaeographically the document is placed in the late second 
century BCE. 

For the editio princeps, see Annette Steudel, DJD, XXXVI, 298- 

Fr. I 

... [B1]essed art Thou, O Lord, who art righteous in all Thy ways. Be 
mighty in strength ... [in Thy judge]ments. Thou who art faithful ... Thou 
art understanding [with all injtelligence ... might. Thou who art ... to 
bring out ... who hast created the morning as a sign to reveal the 
dominion of the light as the boundary of the daytime ... for their work. 
To bless Thy holy name Thou hast created them. For the light is good 
... [Thou art ... ] who hast created the evening as a sign to reveal the 
dominion [of darkness] ... from labour. Thou hast [c]reated them to 
bless Thy holy name] when they see that the light is good arxJ when ... 
Thou hast created the evening as a sign (to mark) the appearance of 
the dominion of [darkness] ... 



These fragments from a collection of blessings were originally 
attached to the Scroll containing the Community Rule and the 
Messianic Rule. They have been skilfully pieced together by J. T. Mlllk 
(DJD, I, 1 18-29), who dates them to around 100 BCE. 

The Blessings were to be recited by the Master or Guardian, and 
were, as it seems, intended for the messianic age, and perhaps for the 
ceremony of the institution of the new Community. It is, however, 
possible that they were actually used during the course of some liturgy 
anticipating and symbolizing the coming of the messianic era. All the 
members of the Covenant are blessed first, followed by someone who 
seems to be the priestly head of the Community, the Messiah of 
Aaron. The next blessing is addressed to the sons of Zadok, the 
Priests (and Levites?), and finally the Prince of the Congregation, the 
Messiah of Israel, is blessed. The rest of the document is lost. 

For an additional fragment, see G. J. Brooke and J. M. Robinson, 'A 
Further Fragment of IQSb; The Schoyen Collection MS 1909', JJS 46 
(1995), 120-33. 

The Blessing of the Faithful 

I Words of blessing. The Master shall bless them that fear [God and 
do] His will, that keep His commandments, and hold fast to His holy 
[Covenant], and walk perfectly [in all the ways of] His [truth], whom He 
has chosen for an eternal Covenant which shall endure for ever. 

May the [Lord bless you from the Abode of His holi ness]; may He open 
for you from heaven an eternal fountain which [shall not fall]! 

May He [favour] you w/ith every [heavenly] blessing; [may He teach you] 
the knowledge of the Holy Ones! 

[May He unlock for you the] everlasting [fountain; may He not withhold 
the waters of life from] them that thirst! 

The Blessing of the High Priest 

III May the Lord lift His courrtenance towards you; [may He delight In 
the] sweet odour [of your sacrifices]! 

May He choose [all] them that sit in your prles[tly college]; may He 
store up all your sacred offerings, and in the [season of) ... all your 

May He [lift] His countenance towards all your congregation! 

May He place upon your head [a diadem] ... in [everlasting] glory; may 

He sanctify your seed in glory without end! 

May He grant you everlasting [peace] ... 

May He fight [at the head of] your Thousands [until the generation of 
falsehood is ended] ... [to bend] many peoples before you ... all the 
riches of the world ... 

For God has established all the foundations of ... may He lay the 
foundation of your peace for ever! 

The Biessing of the Priests 

Words of blessing. The M[aster shall bless] the sons of Zadok the 
Priests, whom God has chosen to confirm His Covenant for [ever, and 

to inquire] into all His precepts in the midst of His people, and to 
instruct tliem as He commanded; wlio have established [His Covenant] 
on truth and watched over all His laws with righteousness and wall<ed 
according to the way of His choice. 

iVIay the Lord biess you from His holy [Abode]; may He set you as a 

splendid jewel in the midst of the congregation of the saints! 

May He [renew] for you the Covenant of the [everlasting] priesthood; 

may He sanctify you [for the House] of Holiness! 

May He [judge alQ the leaders by your worl<s, and all [the princes] of the 

peoples by the words from out of your lipsi 

May He give you as your portion the firstfruits of [all delectable things]; 

may He Ijless by your hand the counsel of all flesh! 

IV ... may everlasting blessings be the crown upon your head! 

... [For] He has chosen you [to] ... and to number the saints and to 

[bless] your people ... the men of the Council of God by your hand, and 

not by the hand of a prince ... 

... May you be as an Angel of the Presence in the Abode of Holiness to 
the glory of the God of [hosts] ... 

May you attend upon the service in the Temple of the Kingdom and 
decree destiny in company with the Angels of the Presence, in 
common council [with the Holy Ones] for everlasting ages and time 
without end; for [all] His judgements are [truth]! 

May He make you holy among His people, and an [eternal] light [to 
illumine] the world with knowledge and to enlighten the face of the 
Congregation [with wisdom]! [May He] consecrate you to the Holy of 
Holies! For [you are made] holy for Him and you shall glorify His Name 
and His holiness ... 

The Blessing of the Prince of the Congregation 

The Master shall bless the Prince of the Congregation ... and shall 
renew for him the Covenant of the Community that he may establish 
the kingdom of His people for ever, [ttiat he may judge the poor with 

righteousness and] dispense justice with {equity to the oppressed} 
(Schoyen) of the larxJ, and ttiat he may wall< perfectly before Him in aii 
the ways [of truth], arxJ ttiat he may estabiish His Ixjiy Covenant at the 
time of the affliction of those who seek God. 

May the Lord raise you up to everlasting heights, and as a fortified 
tower upon a high wail! 

[May you smite the peoples] with the might of your hand and ravage the 
earth with your sceptre; may you bring death to the ungodly with the 

breath of your lips! 

[May He shed upon you the spirit of counsel] and everlasting might, the 
spirit of knowledge and of the fear of God; may righteousness be the 
girdle [of your loins] and may your reins be girdled [with faithfulness]! 
May He make your horns of iron and your hooves of bronze; may you 
toss like a young bull [and trample ttie peoples] like the mire of the 

For God has established you as the sceptre. The rulers ... [and all the 
kings of the] nations shall serve you. He shall strengthen you with His 
holy Name and you shall be as a [lion; and you shall not lie down until 
you have devoured the] prey which naught shall deliver ... 


(4Q 280, 286-90) 

Five fragmentary copies of a text containing liturgical blessings and 
curses, each unit ending witli 'Amen, amen', have survived in Cave 4. 
Of these 4QBeral<hot^ (4Q286), preserved on three photographic 
plates (PAM 43-311-13), provides continuous passages. They parallel 
Community Rule II and War Rule XIII, and the style of 4Q286 I also 
recalls the Songs of the Holocaust for the Sabbath (4Q400-407). I 
agree with Bilhah Nitzan that 4QBerakhot is probably an independent 
version of part of the ceremony of the renewal of the covenant included 
in 1QS 11, 3-17. 4Q280 depends mainly on Community Rule ii, but 
reveals Satan's specific name, Melkiresha' (My king is wickedness), 
the counterpartof A//e/c/7/zede/c(My king is justice), chief of the Army of 
Light (of below, pp. 532, 571 ). 

For theeditio princeps, see B. Nitzan, DJD, XI, 1-74 (4Q286-90), 
and DJD, XXIX, 1-8 (4Q280). 


Fr. 1a ii 

II The seat of Thy splendour and the footstool of Thy glory In the 
[h]eights of Thy standing and Thy holy stepping-place. And Thy glorious 
chariots, their cherubim and their wheels arxJ all [their] companies; 
foundations of fire and flames of brightness arxl shininqs of majesty 

and str[eam]s of fire and wonderful luminaries; [majes]ty and splendour 
and glorious height, holy foundation and sou[rce ofl majesty and height 
of glory, ma[rvel of than]l<sgivings and reservoir of might, splendour of 
praises and great in wonderful things arKi healing[s] and miraculous 
deeds, foundation of wisdom and pattern of knowledge and source of 
understanding, source of prudence and holy counsel and true 
foundation, treasure-house of Intelligence, building of righteousness 
and place of upright[ness, great] in lovlng-klndness and in meekness 
and true ioving-kindness and everlasting mercies and mysteries of 
mar[vels] In [the]lr reve[latlons] and holy weeks In their appointed time 
and squads of months ... [... of ye]ars In their circuits and glorious 
festive seasons in [their] ... fixed moments ... and the sabbatical years 
of the land In [their] dlvi[slons, ap]polnted times for llbe[rty ... eternity ... 
[I]ight and dar[kness ... ] 


... [thei]r ... in the strength of their majesty and aii the [spjirits of those 
who bring to the Sanctuajry] ... in [their] comp[anies and in] their 
[dojminions, the mighty of the 'gods' with power, vacat ... zeal for 
judgement with strength, vacat ... [they shall] all [bless in comjmunity 
Thy holy name.... [Ho]iy of Holies [they] will curse ... knowledge of 
understanding ... vacat ... joyous cry ... 


... ru[ling] angels ... in (ajll their services ... [spjarks and lightnings ... the 
angels of rain cl[oud]s, and heavy clouds and thick [clouds] and dew- 
drops ... and all the spirits of dominations ... wlien they were created ... 
[sucjceed one another ... 


... the earth and everything [on it, 

and the worid and aii its] inhabitants. 

The ground and ail its devices; 

[the earth and al]i that exist on it. 

[The mountains and ai]i the hiiis; 

the vaiieys and aii the ravines; 

the dry ian[d ...] its [ce]dars; 

the iow-iying woods and aii the deserts of desolation 

... and its voids; 

and the foundations of its structure. 

The jacl<ais and ... 

... the taii trees, their fruit 

and aii the cedars of Leban[on] ... 

[Grain, win]e and oii and aii the produce. 

... and aii the wave-offerings of the worid 

intw[eive] months ... 

... Thy words. Amen, amen. 

Fr. 7a i 

I ... and aii their elect and all who know the song of ... and the 

blessings of truth in the fe[stive] times ... and the l<ingdom shall be lifted 
up among the p[eople]s ... the assembly of the pure 'gods' and all who 
possess everlasting l<nowledge to prai[se and to bl]ess Thy glorious 
name in all the [everlasting ages]. Amen, amen. 

Frs. 20+13+4Q288 

[Every one should rebul<e his fellow in truth, and virtuous humility and 
with] righteous [intenti]on [in the Community of God. And whoever] has 
erred when returning [to the truth], they shall rebuke him [according to] 
their [commandments]. They shall rebuke him and have mercy [on him 
if he transgr]esses. Let no [man] bear gru[dge against his fellow from 

one day] to [ano]ther. [Let him] not hate him in his heart [so as n]o[t to 
bear guiit because of him. And whatever is revealed to the men] of the 
Community iet him instruct [him with] his merfciful iove] and with the 
spirit [of humiiity he shall distance him from the deeds of] 
deceitfuiness. The [Guardian of the Congregation shall ad]monish him 
regarding all [the regulations] perfecting his deeds from all [sin through 
re]bul<ing him before wi[tnesses. Let no man take revenge] on his own 
behalf in any matter for he will be punished [for six months/one year (?)] 
... Let no one take the law [in his own hand, disobeying the order of his 
fellow. Let him not speak to him] in anger or out of envy prompted by 
the spirit of wickedness, disregarding the dignity of his colleague with 
[heated] anger, standing up against him without [justification]. 

4Q287 fr. 3 

... and they shall bless Thy holy name with benedictions of... the Holy of 
Holies. And all the creatures of flesh [shall bl]ess Thee, all of them that 
Thou has crea[ted] ... the beasts and the birds and the worms and the 
fish of the sea and all ... Thou hast created them all renewing ... 


... against the anointed ones of [His] hol[y] spirit ... 

4Q286 (4Q287, fr. 6)=4QBerakhot'' 

Curses of Belial 

Fr. 7 a 

II council of the Community stiall all say together, Amen, amen. 
Afterwards [they] shall damn Belial and all his guilty lot. They shall 
answer and say, Cursed be [B]elial in his hostile design, and damned 
in his guilty dominion. Cursed be all the spirits of his [lo]t in their 
wicked design, and damned in their thoughts of unclean impurity For 
they are the lot of darkness and their visitation is for eternal 
destruction. Amen, amen. 

Cursed be the Wicke[d One in all the ages ] of his dominions, and 
may all the sons of Belial be damned in all the works of their service 
until their annihilation [for ever, Amen, amen.] 

And [they shall coritinue to say: Be cursed, Ang]el of Perdition and 
Spirpt of Destjruction, in all the thoughts of your g[uilty] inclination [and 
all yourabominajble [plots] and [your] wicked design, [and] may you be 
[da]mned ... Amen, am[en]. 

[Cursed be a]ll those who practi[se] their [wicked designs] and 
establish [in their heart] their (evil) devices, [plotting against Go]d'[s 
Covenant] ... to exchange the judgemen[ts of truth for folly.] 


Curses of Melkiresha' 

[May God set him apart] for evil from the midst of the Sons of Li[ght 
because he has turned away from following Him. 

And they shall continue saying: Be curjsed, Melkiresha', in all the 
thou[ghts of your guilty inclination. May] God [deliver you up] for torture 
at the hands of the vengeful Avengers. May God not heed [when] you 
call on Him. [May He raise His angry face] towards you. May there be 
no (greeting of) 'Peace' for you in the mouth of all those who hold fast 
to the Father[s. IVlay you be cursed] with no remnant, and damned 

without escape. 

Cursed be those wtw practi[se their wicked designs] and [es]tabiish 
in their heart your (evil) devices, plotting against the Covenant of God 
... , seers of [His] truth. 

[Who]ever refuses to enter [His Covenant, walking in the 
stubbornness of his heart] ... 

Confession Ritual 


Fragmentary remains of a communal confession of sins, spoken in tlie 
first person plurai, recaii tlie language of Psalm 11, Jeremiah and 
Deuteronomy, and resemble confession prayers in Ezra ix, 5-15; 
Daniel ix, 4-19; 1QS 1, 24-11, 1. In the latter text, the parallel 
confession is part of the ceremony of the renewal of the Covenant. The 
script is dated to mid-first century BCE. 
For the editio princeps, see Daniel Falk, DJD, XXIX, 45-61 . 

I ... in order that Thou be justified by Thy wor[ds] ... we were poured out 
through our iniquities ... they [stiff]ened the neck. Our God, hide Thy 
face from [our] si[ns and] blot out [al]l our iniquities and create in us a 
new spirit, O Lord.... [do not] withhold faithfulness and to rebels ... and 
bring back sinners to Thee. And [do not] reject from Thee the broken 
[spirjit, O God. According to Thy people in order to ... and always on ... 
nations and kingdoms ... their word[s] ... to Thy peoples in order to ... 

II ... the faithful God who keep [the] covenant and loving-kindness to 
those who love [Thee and who keep Thy commandments which Thou 
didst command] to Moses. Do not forsake Thy people [and] Thine 
[injheritance. And let no man walk in the stubbomness of his [evil] 
heart. O God, in Thy goodwill ... Thy people and Thine inheritance shall 
not be forsa[k]en and let no man walk in the stubbomness of his evil 
heart. And where is Strength? And on whom shalt Thou cause Thy face 
to shine without his being purified? And they shall be sanctified and 
exalted above everything. It is Thou O Lord who tiast chosen our 
fathers from of old. Thou tiast caused us to stand for them as a 
remnant to give us (the covenarrt) which Thou hast established with 
Abraham for Israel that tfiey might possess the proud ... mighty men, 

the hosts of those who are powerful, giving us houses filled with ... 
water, vineyards and oiive trees [and] an inheritance of the people ... 

Purification Ritual A 

(4Q 512) 

Badly worn papyrus fragments from Cave 4 (4Q512) contain prayers: 
to be recited to obtain purification from various l<inds of ritual 
uncleanness. M. Baillet (DJD, VII, 263-86) suggests an early first- 
century BCE date for the script. 

Frs. 29-32 

VII And he will bless there [the God of Israel. Answering, he will say: 
Blessed art Thou, God of Israel. And I stand] before Thee on the feas[t] 
... Thou hast ... me for purity ... and his burnt-offering and he will bless. 
Answering he will say: Blessed art Thou, [God of Israel, who hast 
delivered me from al]l my sins and purified me from impure indecency 
and hast atoned so that I come ... purification and the blood of the 
burnt-offering of Thy goodwill and the pleasing memorial ... 


X [And on completin]g [his] seven days of puri[fication] ... and he shall 
wash his clothes with w[ater and cleanse his body] and he shall put on 
his garments and shall bless ag[ain] ... the God of ^ra[e]l ... 

Purification Ritual B 


Thirty-six badly damaged fragments, written on tine verso of 4Q415, 
represent a purificatory ritual and prayers. The script dates to the turn 
of the era. Some lines are parallel to 4Q512, frs. 42-44 ii, 2 — 5. 
For the editio piinceps, see E. Eshel, DJD, XXXV, 135-54. 

Fr. 2 ii 3-4 

... and thou shalt purify us according [to] Thy precepts of holiness for 
the first, the third and the seventh ... by the truth of Thy covenant ... to be 
purified from the impurity of ... And then he shall enter the water ... 
Answering, he shall say, 'Blessed a[rt Thou, God of Israel] for from the 
utterance of Thy mouth is declared the purity of all: to be separated 
from all the guilty men of uncleanness who cannot be purified by the 
purifying water .... 

A Liturgical Worit 

(4Q 392-3) 

This is a religious text, possibiy liturgical, but strongly reminiscent of 
tlie language of tlie Tlianl<sgiving Hymns. For tlie editio phnceps, see 
D. Fall<, DJD, XXIX, 23-44. 

Fr. 1 

... each to be united with [G]od and not to depart from a[ll] ... and their 
soul will cling to His Covenant and ... the words of the mouth of ... The 
Go[d] ... the heaven above and to search out the ways of the sons of 
man (leaving) no secret [in their heart(?)]. He created darkness [and 
Ijight is His, and in His dwelling is the most perfect light, and all 
gloominess ceases before Him. It is not for Himself the distinction 
between light and darkness, for He has distinguished them for the 
sons of man: light during the day by means of the sun; (and during the) 
night (by means of) moon and stars. The inscrutable light is with Him, 
and His knowledge is without [end, f]or all the works of God are 
multiple (?). We who are flesh, should we not consider this? With us ... 
for countless signs and wonders ... [wi]nds and lightnings ... [s]ervants 
of the most holy pla[ce]. From before Him proceed the lu[minaries] ... 

Frs. 2 and 5 (4Q393 1 i) 

... [they did not lisjten to the signs and wonders ... plagues [which no 
kingdom has seen] until this day and ... He has brought us out [of the 

land of Egypt] without being counted. In tlie migtity waters he made a 
path ... the great [abyss] [and He made] him [sin]l< Wke stone in the 
deep ... 

D. Historical and Apocalyptic Works 

'Conquest of Egypt and Jerusalem or Acts of a Greek King', Israel 
Antiquities Authority 

Apocalyptic Chronology or Apocryphal Weeks 

(4Q 247) 

A fragment consisting of seven mutilated iines, and paiaeographicaiiy 
dated to the last decades of the first century BCE, appears to belong 
to an apocalyptic account of world history, divided into weeks of years 
and possibly centred on the Temple of Jerusalem. Despite the lack of 
continuous narration, tfie significant details justify tlie inclusion of this 
text in the volume. 
For the editio princeps, see M. Broshi, DJD, XXXVI, 1 87-91 . 

... [de]termined [end] ... [And afterwards will co]me the fif[th] week ... 
four-hundred [and eighty years (after the exodus from Egypt)] 
Solo[mon] (built the Temple; cf 1 Kings vi, 1 ) ... (It was desfroyed in the 
time) [of Zede]kiah king of Judah ... 

(It was restored by) the Levites arxJ the people of the Lan[d] ... (Final 
stage) ... kin[g] of the Kittim ... 

Historical Text A 


The story told in ttiis ten-line fragment, which contains only broken 
lines, resembles ttie account of Daniel xi conceming ttie 'King of the 
North' (Antiochus IV Epiphanes) who invades Egypt and ill-treats 

For the editio princeps, see M. Broshi and E. Eshel, DJD, XXXVI, 

... in Egypt and Greece and ... Therefore they shall eat ... their [s]ons 
and their daughters in a siege in ... 

And (the Lord) shall cause [His] wind to pass [through] their court- 
yards and ... he shall come to Egypt and sell her dust and ... to the city 
of the Temple and shall capture her with all [her ... ] And he shall turn 
against the lands of the nations and shall return to Egyp[t] ... [And when 
the shattering of the power of the ho[ly] people [comes to an end] ... 
When all these [come into being] the children [of Israel] shall return ... 

Historical Texts C-E (formerly Mishmarot C^'^) 


Three very badly mutilated calendric documents Include references to 
Jewish and Roman historical personalities (Shelamzlon/Salome 
Alexandra, wife of Alexander Jannaeus; Hyrcanus II, her son; Yohanan 
the high priest, probably John Hyrcanus I; the KIttIm (Romans) and 
Aemlllus (no doubt M. Aemlllus Scaurus, governor of Syria). They all 
lived in the iate second or the first half of the first century BCE. The 
compositions recall the early rabbinic historical calendar krwwn as 
Meglllat Taanit (see HJP, 114-5). 
For the editio princeps, see J. A. FItzmyer, DJD, XXXVI, 281 -9. 

Fr.1 i 

[the] priest ... Johanan to bring to ... 

Fr. 1 ii 

... Shelamzlon ... 

Text D {4Q332) 


... [to] give him honour among the Arab[s] ... [on the n]inth of Shebat — 
that is ... which is the twentieth (day) of the month ... Shelamzion came 
... to oppose ... Hyrcanus rebelled ... to oppose ... 


... [of the Kit]tim killed ... [on the] fifth [day] in (the week of) Jedaiah - 
this is ... 

Text E (4Q333) 

... [in (the week of) Je]hezekel which is ... Aemillus killed ... [in] the 
seventh [mon]th ... (the week of) Gamul ... Aemillus killed ... 

Historical Text F 


A tiny fragment is the only surviving part of a tiistorical document 
containing tlie unusuai name of Pvrf/ys. Tlie editor, IVI. Broslii, reads it 
as Ptoiias, a Hellenized form of tlie Hebrew name Putiei, and probabiy 
identicai with a companion of Herod's son Archeiaus, who 
accompanied him to Rome in 4 BCE. The journey was preceded by 
civil riots in Jerusalem which were suppressed by the army, killing 
three thousand people (cf Josephus, /Anf. xvii, 213-18; War n, 8-14)' 
Two other scholars, D. R. Schwartz and W. Horbury (see JJS 50, 308- 
11), suggest a reading of Peitholaus, a pro-Roman Jew associated 
with the massacre of many of his compatriots in mid-first century BCE 
(cf Ant. xiv, 84-5; War, \, 162-3). 
For the ed/f/o princeps, see IVI. Broshi, DJD, XXXVI, 407-1 1 . 

[to k]ill the multitude of men ... Potlaus/Potlays. And the persons that 

The Triumph of Righteousness or IVIysteries 

(1Q27, 4Q299-3011) 

Originally entitled The Book of Mysteries by J.J. Milik (DJD, I, 102-5), 
these fragments expound the familiar theme of the struggle between 

good and evil, but their nature is difficult to determine. Perhaps they 
derive from a sermon, or from an apocalyptical writing. Three further 
manuscripts (4Q299-301) yield badly damaged fragments belonging 
to the same writing. 4Q300 3 and 4Q299 partly overlap with 1Q27. An 
earlier passage may be reconstructed from 4Q300 and 4Q299. 
For the editio princeps, see L. H. Schiffman, DJD, XX, 3 1 -1 23. 

1Q27 combined with 4Q300, fr. 3 and 4Q299, fr. 


I ... all {so that they might know the difference between g[ood and evil] 
...} (4Q300) the mysteries of sin ... {all their wisdom} (4Q300). 

They know not the mystery to come, nor do they understand the 
things of the past. They know not that which shall befall them, nor do 
they save thei r soul from the mystery to come. 

And this shall be the sign for you that these things shall come to 

When the breed of iniquity is shut up, wickedness shall then be 
banished by righteousness as darkness is banislied by the light. As 
smoke clears and is no more, so shall wickedness perish for ever and 
righteousness be revealed like a sun goveming the world. All who 
cleave to the mysteries of sin shall be no more; krxjwledge shall fill the 
world and folly shall exist no longer. 

This word shall surely come to pass; this prophecy is true. And by 
this may it be i<nown to you that it shaii not be tal<en bacl<. 

Do not ali the peoples loathe iniquity? And yet it is spread by them 
ali. Does not the fame of truth issue from the mouth of aii the nations? 
Yet is there a Hp or tongue which holds to It? Which nation likes to be 
oppressed by another stronger than itself, or likes its wealth to be 
wickedly seized? And yet which nation has not oppressed another, 
and where is there a people which has not seized [anotherj's wealth? 

4Q299, fr. 3a 4-6 (4Q300 5) 

...And what shaii man be called ... wise and righteous, for man has no 
... , nor concealed wisdom save the wisdom of wicked cunning and the 
de[sign of] ... a deed that shaii not be done again except ... the word of 
his Maker And what shall a m[an] do ... who rebels against the word of 
his Maker, his name shall be expunged from the mouth of aii ... Listen, 
you who hold up [truth (?)] ... eternity and the plans of existence and the 
thou[ghts] ... every mystery and establishes every plan. He is the author 
of aii [that is to come.] He is from before eternity. 'He' is His name and 
for e[ver] ... 

4Q300 1a-b ii 4=4Q299 2 i 14 

... [the sorcjerers, experts in sin, have uttered the parable and 
proclaimed the riddle in advance. And then you will know if you have 
considered ... and the attestations of heave[n] ... your foolishness for 
the [sjeai of the vision is sealed away from you. And you have not 
considered the mysteries of eternity and have not comprehended 
understanding. Th[en] you will say ... for you have not considered the 
root of wisdom. And if you open the vision, it will remain shut from you 
... all your wisdom for ttie ... is for you ... his name for [wh]at is the 

hidden wisdom 


i wiii cause my spirit to flow and i wiii divide my words for you according 
to your l<inds ... [a pjarable and a riddle. And tliose who search for the 
roots of understanding together with those who hold unto the 
[wonderful] my[steries] ... those who are silly, and the scheming men for 
all the acomplishmente of their actions ... 

Time of Righteousness 


Previously classified as part of the Testament of Naphtali (4Q21 5), the 
four fragments of 4Q215a, of which only one is translatable, belong to 
a work of poetic eschatology. The subject is the end of wickedness 
and the portrayal of final blessedness. 

For the editio princeps, see E. Chazon and M. Stone, DJD, XXXVI, 

Fr. 1 ii 

... and the stressful constraint and the ordeal of the pit and they shall be 
refined by them to become the elect of righteousness, and all their 
wickedness will be blotted out (?) because of His loving-kindness. For 
the age of wickedness is complete and all injustice has [passed] away. 
[For] the time of righteousness has come and the earth is full with 
knowledge and the praise of God. In the day[s of] ... has come the age 
of peace and the precepts of truth and the testimony of righteousness 
to make one understand the ways of God and the might of His deeds 
for ever and ever Every ... shall bless Him and every man shall 
prostrate himself before Him. [And they shall have] one [hejart. For He 
knows their recompense before they were created and had assigned 
the service of righteousness as their boundaries ... in their 
generations. For the dominion of righteousness/of goodness has 
come and He shall raise up the throne of the [kingdom], and 
intelligence is greatly exalted; prudence and soundness are tried by 
[His] h[o]lydesi[gn] ... 

The Renewed Earth 

(4Q 475) 

A single fragment of a poem, palaeographically datable to the late first 
century BCE, depicts tlie eschatologicai bliss of the Holy land. 
For the editio phnceps, see T. Elgvin, DJD, XXXVI, 464-73. 

... [He has] chosen [Zio]n, and in righteous life ... [And] they did 

forget [His precepts] and did not seek them. And the land 

(His) hands in the midst of them and explained to them all the 
[laws?] ... [a]ll the earth so that there will be no more guilt in the 

land, nor will be [destruction and all hatred and the whole 

world will be like a moth. And all [its] inhabitants And the 

land will be at rest for ever. And [its] inhabita[nts] will ... [And 
they will become] a beloved son and they will seek all of it, and 
righteousness ... 

A Messianic Apocalypse 


Commonly referred to as the 'Resurrection fragment', this writing 
consists of sixteen fragments. The script is dated to the beginning of 
the first century BCE. Whether the designation 'apocalypse' is fully 
justified is a moot point: the writing comes across as a composition in 
verse akin to the poetry of the late biblical period. The surviving 
fragments do not appear to include anything patently sectarian. The 
term 'IVIessiah', probably in the singular, is used without the addition of 
Aaron or Israel, and the noun 'hasidim', absent from the big scrolls and 
little attested elsewhere, figures in lines 5 and 7. The divine name 
'Lord' represents, not the Tetragram, but Adonai (four times). The 
poem incorporates Ps. cxivi, 6-7 and Isa. Ixi, 1, the latter cited also in 
the New Testament (Lk. iv, 18). As in the Gospels, healing and 
resurrection are linked to the idea of the Kingdom of God. Line 12 
furnishes the most explicit evidence concerning the raising of the 
dead. Fragment 7, line 6, repeats the same idea, referring to God as 
'He who will raise the dead of His people'. 

For Vneeditio princeps, see E. Puech, DJD, XXV, 1—38; of. G. 
Vermes, 'Qumran Forum Miscellanea \\JJSA3 (1992), 303^. 

Fr. 2 

II ... [the hea]vens and the earth will listen to His Messiah, and none 
therein will stray from the commandments of the holy ones. 

Seekers of the Lord, strengthen yourselves in His service! 

All you hopeful in (your) heart, will you not find the Lord in this? 

For the Lord will consider the pious (hasidim) and call the righteous 

by name. 

Over the poor His spirit will hover and will renew the faithful with His 

And He will glorify the pious on the throne of the eternal Kingdom. 

He who liberates the captives, restores sight to the blind, straightens 
the b[ent] (Ps. cxivi, 7-8). 

And f[or] ever I will clea[ve to the h]opeful and in His mercy ... 

And the fr[uit ... ] will not be delayed for anyone 

And the Lord will accomplish glorious things which have never been 
as [He ... ] 

For He will heal the wounded, and revive the dead and bring good 
news to the poor (Isa. Ixi, 1 ). 
... He will lead the uprooted and make the hungry rich ... 


... [the ear]th and all that is on it; and the sea [and all that is in it] and all 
the ponds of water and rivers who are doing good before the Lor[d] ... 
... like those who curse and are (destined) for death [when] the Life- 
giver will raise the dead of His people. 

And we will thank and proclaim to you the righteousness of the Lord, 
who ... 

E. Wisdom Literature 

The Seductress', Israel Antiquities Authority 

The Seductress 


A long and relatively well-preserved Wisdom poem from Cave 4 
(4Q184) depicts, by means of tlie metaphor of tlie harlot, the dangers 
and attraction of false doctrine. Palaeographically, the text is dated to 
the first century BCE, but the work may be much older, possibly 
antedating the Qumran sect. 

For the editio princeps, see J. IVI. Allegro and A. A. Anderson, 
DJD,V, 82-5. Cf also J. Strugnell, RQ7 (1970), 263-8. 

... speaks vanity and ... errors. 

She is ever prompt to oil her words, and she flatters with irony, 
deriding with iniquitous l[ips]. 

Her heart is set up as a snare, and her kidneys (affections) as a 
fowler's nets. 

Her eyes are defiled with iniquity, her hands have seized hold of 
the Pit. 

Her legs go down to work wickedness, and to walk in wrong- 

Her... are fourKlations of darkness, and a multitude of sins is in 
her skirts. 

Her... are darkness of night, and her garments... 

Her clothes are shades of twilight, and her ornaments plagues 

of corruption. 

Her couches are beds of corruption, and her ... depths of the pit. 
Her inns are couches of darkness, and her dominions in the 
midst of the night. 

She pitches her dwelling on the fourKlations of darkness she 
abides 1 n the tents of si lence. 

Amid everlasting fire is her inheritance, not among those who 

shine brightly. 

She is the beginning of ali the ways of iniquity. 

Woe (and) disaster to all who possess her! And desolation to 

all who hold her! 

For her ways are ways of death, and her pattis are roads of sin, 
and her tracks are pathways to iniquity, and her by-ways are 
rebellious wrong-doings. 

Her gates are gates of death, and from the entrance of the 
house she sets out towards the underworld. 
None of those who enter there will ever return, and all who 
possess her will descend to the Pit. She lies in wait in secret 

places, ... 

In the city's squares she veils herself, and she stands at the 
gates of towns. 

She will never re[st] from wh[orin]g, her eyes glance hither and 

She lifts her eyelids naughtily to stare at a virtuous man and join 
him, and an important man to trip him up, at upright men to 
pervert their way, and the righteous elect to keep them from the 
commandment, at the firmly established to bring them down 
wantonly, and those who walk in uprightness to alter the statute; 
to cause the humble to rebel against God, and turn their steps 
away from the ways of justice, to bring insolence to their heart, 
so that they march no more in the paths of uprightness; to lead 
men astray to the ways of the Pit, arxJ seduce with flatteries 
every son of man. 

Exhortation to Seek Wisdom 


Large fragments of a Wisdom poem in which a teacher encourages 
his 'people', his 'sons', the 'Simple', to search for Wisdom have been 
preserved in Cave 4 (4Q185). The script is believed to be late 
Hasmonaean, i.e. from the first half of the first century BCE. As is often 
the case in Wisdom literature, events of the patriarchal arxJ Mosaic 
past are used for didactic purposes. 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Allegro and A. A. Anderson, DJD, 
V, 85-7. Cf J. Strugnell, RQ 7 (1970), 269-73. 

I ... And you, sons of men, woe to you! 

For he (man) sprouts from his ground like grass, and his grace 

blossoms like a flower. 

His [gl]ory blows away and his grass dries up, and the wind 

carries away its flower 

... so that it is found no more ... 

They shall seek him but shall not firKi him, and there Is no hope 

(for him); and his days are like a shadow over the ea[rth]. 

Now pray hearken to me, my people; heed me, O you Simple; 

become wise through the might of God. 

Remember His miracles which He did In Egypt, and His 

marvels in the land of Ham. 

Let your heart shake because of His fear, 

II and do His will your souls according to His good graces, 

and search for yourself a way towards life, a highway [towards 

a remnant for your sons after you. 

And why have you given up your soul to vanity, ... judgement? 
Hearken to me, O my sons, and do rxjt rebel against the words 


Do not walk ... [but in ttie way He established] for Jacob, and in 
the path which He decreed for Isaac. 

Is one day not better His fear, and not to be afflicted (?) by 

dread and the fowler's net. ... to be set apart from His angels, 
for there is no darkness, nor gloom ... 

And you, what do you understand ... before Him evil shall go 
towards every people. 

Happy is the man to whom it (Wisdom) has been given thus, ... 

the evil, nor let the wicked boast, saying: 

It has not been given me, nor ... [For God gave it] to Israel, and 

with a good measure He measures it; and He will redeem all 

His people, and He will put to death those wtx) hate His 


Seek her and find her, grasp her and possess her! 

With her is length of days arxl fatness of bone, the joy of the 

heart and ... 

Happy is the man who works it ... wfio does not seek it ... of 
deceit, nor holds to it with flatteries. 

As it has belonged to his fathers, so will he inherit it, and hold 
fast to it with all the strength of his might, and all his 
immeasurable ... and he shall cause his offspring to inherit it. 

I know how to labour for good ... 
Ill ... 

[God inspects] all the chambers of the womb and He tries all its 
inward parts. 

[God shapes] the tongue and knows its words. 

God makes the hand [and understands their deeds (?)] ... 

A Parable of Warning 


This text comprises eighteen badiy damaged papyrus fragments 
paiaeographicaiiy dated to the end of the second century BCE. The 
topic of the first fragment seems to be the giant 'good' tree which 
produces thorns. 
For the editio princeps, see B. Nitzan, DJD, XX, 1 35-41 . 

Fr. 2 ii 

II Sages, reflect on this, 
if a man has a good tree 
[which grows] as far as heaven 

[and its branches reach (?)] 
to the ex[tremitie]s of the iands, 
yet it [pr]oduces thorny fruits (?) 
... former rain and iatter rain ... 
and in thirst ... 

Fr. 3 ii 

... God wiii avenge Himseif on you for your transgression ... your 
designs and He does not stand up against you to rebuke you, and to 
dispute with you. God's seat is in heaven and His dominion is over the 
iands and seas ... 

Sapiential Didactic Worit A 


This badly mutilated wisdom composition is represented by four 
fragments. Ttiey contain oniy one translatable sentence. 
For the editio princeps, see A. Steudel, DJD, XX, 1 64-7. 

Fr. 1 

[P]ut a lock on your lips and protecting doors to your tongue ... 

A Sapiential Worit (i) 


Two fragments have preserved the first four lines of a column from a 
Wisdom composition. The script Is Herodian, dating to the turn of the 
era. The word 'God' Is written with palaeo-Hebrew letters In lines 2 and 

For the editio princeps, see E. Qlmron, DJD, XX, 169-71 . 

... I will teach you [knowledge(?)] and wisdom, 

And understand the ways of man 

and the works of the sons of ma[n]. 

[According to] God's [lovlng-klndness] towards man, 

He has enlarged his Inheritance In the knowledge of His truth, 

and according to His rejection of every ev[ll man,] 

no-one who [walks after] his ears and his eyes shall live. 

And now [His] lovlng-klndness ... the ancient, 

they will consider the years of all the generations 

as God has revealed ... 

A Sapiential Worit (ii) 

(40415-18, 423, 1Q26) 

A substantial Wisdom composition, probably dating to the second 
century BCE, has survived in six fragmentary manuscripts, one from 
Cave 1 (1 Q26) and five partly overlapping scrolls from Cave 4 (4Q41 5, 
416, 417, 418a and b and 423). Apart from the last-mentioned 
manuscript, dated to the first half of the first century CE, all are said to 
be early Herodian (30 — 1 BCE). The w/ork is unquestionably sectarian 
and displays a terminology akin to the Community Rule, the Damascus 
Document and the Thanksgiving Hymns. T. Elgvin has attempted to 
reconstruct the original work and he sums up Its contents as follows: 
argument with a neighbour; relationship of the elect to God and man; 
God as provider for all his creatures; business ethics; a modest life; 
deposit to be returned in full; the hope of the just man; divine mysteries 
to be studied and the praise of God's name; attitude to parents, wife, 
children; the elect and the sage's escape from God's anger; God as 
permanent judge of wickedness; God as creator of the heavenly 
beings and luminaries; God as future judge; mankind's submission to 
God; the fate of the just and the wicked; religious life; first-born sons of 
God in praise of him; the use of insight; God's eternal plant: the saints; 
God's providence; the distribution of the portions of the elect; the 
farmer and the garden of Eden; Warning: God is to try man. Cf T. 
Elgvin, 'The Reconstruction of Sapiential Work A, RQ16 (1995), 559- 

For the editio princeps, see J. Strugnell and D. J. Harrington, DJD, 
XXXIV, 1-503 (4Q415-418C and 1Q26), and T Elgvin, ibid., 505-33 

4Q416, fr. 1 (=40418, fr. 2) 

From heaven He judges the work of wickedness 
and all the sons of truth will be accepted ... 
... [until] his end 

and all those who have wallowed In It 
shall be frightened and scream. 
For heaven ... 

The waters and abysses shall be frightened, 
and all the spirits of flesh shall be laid bare. 
And the sons of heaven ... Its Oud]gement. 
And all Injustice will yet come to an end 
and the age of trut[h] will be completed ... 
... In all the everlasting ages. 
For He Is the God of truth, and from the beginning 
of years ... 

to establish righteousness between good and ev[ll]. 

[For] his Is a fleshly [ln]cllnatlon 
and his foundation ... 

4Q416, fr. 2 ii (4Q417 2 ii, 4Q418 8, 21, 22, 
4041 8a 

[for] He opens His mercies ... 

and to give nourishment to all the living. 
If he keeps his hand tight, 
the spirit of all flesh is gathered In. 
Do not take ... 

... and the debtor ... let him quickly repay (his debt). 

As for you, settle with him, 

for you must keep an eye on your money purse. 

At[tend] your creditor on behalf of your friend 

and you have gi[ven] aii your iife for (?) him. 

Give quicl<iy what is his and tal<e [your] purse. 

Let your spirit not diminish because of your words; 

do not exchange your hoiy spirit for any weaith, 

for no price equals it ... 

For no man thrusts you away. 

With favour seek His face 

and speak according to His tongue 

and you will then find your pleasure 

... do not ... 

Do not abandon your precepts 

and take care of yourself with your mysteries. 

If he assigns you some work to do, 

do not rest or give sleep to your eyes 

until you have done 

[his] command[ments] ... 

[and] do not add ... 

And if it is to be humbled, do not ... 

Lift up your eyes and see 

that man's zeal is great 

for deceitful is the heart more than every ... 

And also by His gentle wisdom you will hold fast to His 

... you will consult with him. 

And you will be his first-born son 

and (he will) have compassion on you 

like a man on his only son; 

... for you are his servant and his chosen one 

Do not trust ... 

and do not keep awake because of ... 

and become for him like a slave ... 

Do not strike him who is without your strength 

lest you stumble and your shame increase greatly. 

[Do not s]ell yourself for wealth 

it is better for you to be a slave in spirit. 

And serve your master freely 

And do not sell your glory for a price. 

Do not give money In pledge for your Inheritance 

lest It Impoverish your body. 

Do not satiate yourself with bread while there Is no clothing. 

Do not drink wine while there Is no food. 

Do not seek luxury when you lack bread. 

Do not glorify yourself In your need If you are poor 

lest you degrade your life. 

Also do not treat with contempt the vessel of your bosom (wife) 

4Q417, fr. 2i{=4Q416fr. 2i) 

... each time so that he shall not fill you 

and according to his spirit speak against him ... 

without rebuke. 

Forgive the worthy and ... 

And you shall not swallow up his spirit, 

for you have spoken In whisper ... 

And he has recited quickly his rebuke ... 

Do not overlook your sin ... 

for he Is as righteous as you are. 

For he Is a prince among pr[lnces] 

... he will do. 

For how unique Is he In all activity wlth[out] ... 

Do not reckon an unjust man as a help, 

nor one filled with hatred ... [apart from] the wickedness 

of his deeds 

at his visitation. 

Know how to walk with him ... 

Let [lnstr]uctlon not depart from your heart 

and God will be for you, yourself. 

Widen ... In your poverty, 

for who Is more Insignificant than a poor man. 

Do not be jolly while In mourning 

lest you labour all your life. 

Look at the approaching mystery 

and grasp the sources (or: begetters) of salvation, 

and know who is to inherit glory or injustice. 

Will they not... 

and for their mourning everlasting joy. 

Be an advocate for your business ... all your sins. 

Pronounce your judgement like a righteous ruler. 

Do not ta[ke] ... 

and do not overlook your sin. 

Be like a poor man in your dispute; 

His judgement ...take. 

Then God will see and His anger will cease, 

and He will forgive your sins ... 

[Fojr before His anger 

no one can stand, 

And who is righteous in His judgement? 

And without pardon, how can the poor [stand firm 

before Him]? 

And as for you, if you are in need of food, 

your need and your plenty ... you will make abundant. 

Be led to the sustenance of His delight, 

and take from Him your inheritance 

and do not add agaijn] ... 

[By the word] of his mouth everything is 

and whatever He feeds you with, eat it. 

... of your life, vacat 

If in your need you borrow money from people 

do not ... day and night 

and there shall be no rest for your soul 

[until] you have repaid [your] creditor [his money]. 

Do not lie to him so that you will not bear guilt for it. 

Furthermore, because of the reproach ... 

You will not trust his neighbour. 

In your need he will close his hand. 

Your strength ... 

If you receive a stroke ... 

Do not hide from him who stril<es you 

So that he will not reveal your shame ... 

4Q416 2 iii (4Q417 2 ii 26, 4Q418 9-10) 

and remember that you are poor ... 

What you lack, you will not find ... 

[If someone has left] a deposit with you, 

do not put your hand on it lest it be burnt 

and your body be devoured by its flame. 

A[s you have received] it, so return it 

and you will rejoice if you have no responsibility for it. 

Accept no goods from someone whom you do not know 

lest he increase your poverty. 

But if he has thrust it on you, let it be a deposit until death, 

but do not let your spirit be destroyed by it. 

Then you will lie with the truth 

and your memory will flowe[r for ev]er when you die, 

and your posterity will inherit joy. 

You are poor, do not desire anything save your 


and do not be devoured by it lest you change your 


But if He brings you back to glory, walk in it, 

and in the approaching mystery search its beginnings. 

Then you will know 

His inheritance and you will walk in righteousness 

For God will shine His face on all your ways. 

Honour Him who glorifies you and praise His name always. 

For your head is above the summit of the mountains 

and He has given you a seat among the nobles 

and has made you to rule over an inheritance of giory. 
Seel< aiways His pleasure. 

You are a poor man. Do not say: 

Since i am poor, i wiii not seel< l<nowiedge. 

Shoulder every discipline 

and with every ... refine your heart, 

and your thoughts with a multitude of understanding. 

Search the approaching mystery 

and consider all the ways of truth, 

and behold all the roots of injustice. 

Then you will know what is bitter for a man 

and what is sweet for a human being. 

Honour your father in your poverty 

and your mother in your steps. 

For his father is like God to a man 

and his mother like a ruler to a human being. 

For they are the crucible from which you were born 

and as He placed them over you as rulers 

and a frame for the spirit (?), so serve them, 

and as He has revealed to you the approaching mystery, 

honour them for your honour's sake 

and in ... the splendour of their face 

for your life's sake and for the length of your days. 

And if you are as poor as ... 

without precept. 

You have taken a wife in your poverty, 

take the offspring ... 

from the approaching mystery 

when you are joined together. 

Walk with the helpmate of your flesh ... 

4Q416 iv (4Q418 10 5-10) 

... his father and his mother and he will cling [to his wife 
and they will become one flesh] 
He made him rule over her 
and she ... 

He did not make her father rule over her 
and He separated her from her mother . 
and towards you [will be her longing 
and she will be] one flesh for you. 
He will separate your daughter for another 
and your sons ... 

And you will become one with the wife of your bosom, 

for she is the flesh of your na[kedness] 

and whoever rules over her apart from you 

has changed the boundary of his life. 

He has made you to rule over her spirit 

so that she may walk according to your pleasure. 

Let her not increase vows and free-will offerings ... 

Bring back (her?) spirit to your good pleasure, 

and annul by the utterance of your mouth 

every binding oath of hers by which to vow a vow. 

And by your will, stop her ... 

of your lips ... forgive her for your sake. 

Let her not multiply ... 

4Q417 1 i (4Q418, fr. 43-45 i) 

... [And] you, O man of understanding, ... 
Look on ... 

and grasp the wonderful mysteries of the God of awe. 

Look at the approaching mysteries 
And the ancient deeds ... 
... what was and what will be ... 
... in each deed and de[ed] ... 

[day and] night he meditates on the approaching mystery 

and studies (it) always. 

Then you will know truth and injustice, 

wisdom [and folly ... ] 

... in all their ways 

together with their visitation 

for all the eternal ages and everlasting visitation. 

Then you will know the difference 

between [go]od and evil relating to their deeds. 

For the God of knowledge is the foundation of truth, 

and through the approaching mystery 

He set apart its foundation, 

the work of [His hands] ... 

... and in pure understanding were revealed 

... the secrets of his thought 

with his perfect conduct in all his deeds. 

Always seek these eagerly, 

and understand all their results. 

And then you will know everlasting glory 

and His marvellous mysteries, and the might of His deeds. 

And you will understand the beginning of your reward 

at the memorial of the time that has come. 

Engraved is the decree and all the visitation is determined. 

For God's ordinance is engraved 

over all the in[iquities] of the sons of Seth. 

And a book of memorial is written before Him 

for those who keep His word. 

And this is the vision issuing from the meditation 

on the book of memorial. And He gave it as a heritage 

to mankind and to the people of the spirit. 

For his (man's) shape is modelled on the holy ones, 

but meditation belongs no more to the fleshly spirit, 

for it cannot distinguish between g[ood] and evil 

according to the judgement of its spirit. 

And you, son of understanding, look ... at the approaching mystery 
and know the heritage of all the living. 

And his conduct and his visitation ... 

... whether iarge or smaii ... 

do not be touched by wicl<edness ... 

[For whoever is touched] by it 

wiii not be innocent. 

According to his inheritance in it 

He wiii be wicl<[ed] ... 

Son of the inteiiigent, 

Consider your mysteries 

And the foundation of ... 

4Q418,fr. 55 

... watchfuiness wiii be in our heart ... 
and confidence in aii our ways, vacat 
... l<nowiedge, 

and they have not searched for understandi[ng, 
and] ... have not chosen, vacat 
is [he] not the God of l<nowiedge, 
... on the truth, 

estabiishing aii [their ways of un]derstanding? 

He has assigned to aii those who inherit truth 

... watchfuiness ... 

Have not peace and quiet... ? 

[Have] you not l<nown ... ? 

For the hoiyangeis ... in heaven 

[and] ... truth. 

And they wiii pursue aii the roots of understanding, 

And watch over ... 

[And ac]cording to their l<nowiedge 

they wiii be honoured, one more than another, 

and in conformity with his inteiiigence 

wiii his honour increase. 

... Are they (the angeis?) inert iii<e man? 

Are they quiet like a son of man? 
Are tliey not... eternity, 
Inheriting an everlasting possession? 
Have you not seen ... ? 

4Q418,fr. 69(40417 51-5) 


And now, O you foolish hearts, 

What good is to (someone) who is not... 

[What] is silence for someone who does not exist, 

and what is judgement if it has no foundation? 

Why do the dead groan over their ... 

... you have been shaped 

and your return is to eternal destruction. 

For it shall wake up... your sin 

Darkness will roar against your dispute. 

And all those who will exist for ever, 

those who search truth will be aroused for your judgement 

[and then] all the foolish hearts will be destroyed, 

and the sons of injustice will be found no more, 

[and ajll the supporters of wickedness will be put to shame. 

The foundations of the firmament scream at your judgement 

and all the ... will thunder. 

And you, elect of truth 

and pursuers of [righteousness and] jud[gement] 

... guardians of all knowledge, 

how will you say: 

We labour for understanding 

and keep awake to pursue knowledge 

... and be not weary in all the years of eternity. 

Will he not delight in truth for ever 

and knowledge... The s[ons of] heaven whose inheritance is eternal 

Will they indeed say: 

We have laboured in the worl<s of truth 

and we exhausted ourselves in all the ages. 

Will they not wall< in eternal light 

[and inherit g]lory and great splendour. 

And you, O son of [understanding] ... 

4Q418,fr. 81 (4Q423 8 1) 

Your lips are the opening of a spring to bless the holy, 

and in the eternal spring you have praised... 

The [Hol]y... has separated you from every spirit (bound to) 


As for you, separate from all that He hates, 

and keep away from all the abomination of the soul. 

For He has made all, 

and caused them to inherit each his heritage. 

He is your portion and your heritage among the sons of man, 

[and] He has made you ruler [in] his [her]itage. 

And in this you glorify Him, in consecrating yourself to Him. 

When He made of you the holy of holies for the whole world 

And in all these 

He cast your lot. 

And He has much increased your glory 

and has made you the first-born for Himself among... 

... and I give you IVly goodness. 

As for you, is not IVly goodness for you? 

In His faithfulness He has walked always. 

... your deeds. 

And as for you, search His judgements from all your accusers 
with all ... love Him, 

and with eternal loving-kindness, and with mercy towards 
all who keep His word. 
And his zeal... 

And as for you, He has opened understanding to you and has made 

you the ruler over His treasury 

and appointed [you] a receptacle of truth ... 

... them with you, 

and to revoke anger from the men of goodwill by your hand. 
And to visit... with you, 

and before you take your heritage from His hand, 
glorify(?) His holy ones; 
and bef[ore] ... 

... He has opened the [sprjing of all the holy ones, 
and everyone called holy by His name ... 
... with all the ages, 

his beauty and splendour to become an ever[lasting] plant. 
... will walk all those who inherit the earth. 
For in heav[en] ... 

And you, O man of understanding, 

if He has made you rule over handcraft 

and know[ledge] ... 

secret (?) to all mortal men. 

And from there you will seek your prey 

and ... understand much. 

And by all your instructors increase in learning. 

... bring from your poverty 

to all those who seek pleasure. 

Then you will establish... 

... you will be filled 

and you will be satisfied with plenty of good. 

By the skill of your hands... 

For God has assigned a heritage to all the [living] 

and all those wise in heart have become intelligent... 

Fr. 103 ii 

... For all of them will seek their times 
and each man according to [his] pleasure.. 

like a spring of iiving water which contains a secret. 
... Do not mix with your merchandise that which... 
Why shouid it be a mixture iil<e a muie, 
and you shouid be iii<e one dres[sed in mixed materials], 
in wooi and in iinen, 

and you shouid labour with an ox and an ass (yoked) together. 
Your produce also would be like that of one who sows 
mixed seeds. 

Let the seed and the crop and the produce of the [vineyard] 
be holy 

4Q423,frs. 1, 2 

... and every fruit that is grown 

and every tree that is pleasant 

and desirable providing understanding. 

Is this not a pl[easant and desirable] garden 

providing much understanding? 

He made you (Adam) rule over it 

to cultivate and guard it. vacat 

... [the soil] will sprout for you thorn and thistle 

and it will not give you its strength 

... because of your unfaithfulness, vacat 

... she (Eve) gave birth 

and all the sentiments of her who has concei[ved] ... 
... all your secrets... and all your affairs. 
For it will sprout [for you] everything... 
... [knowing] evil, knowing good ... 

4Q423 fr.5 5 

... and beware lest you... the judgement of Korah. 

And as He has unstopped your ear... 

... and the prince of your people... 

He has divided the inheritance of all the rulers 

and the formation of every [dee]d is in His hand. 

He [knows] the reward of [their worl<s 

and] j[udges] them all in truth. 

He visits the sons and the fathers, 

[the sojourners] (proselytes) with all the natives. 

He will speak... 

[If you are a fjarmer, 

pay attention to the seasons of the summer 

and gather in your produce in its time, 

and the period of... 

... the good with the evil 

Observe your produce and your work. 

In your labour consider... the good with the bad, 

the intelligent man with the fool 

A Sapiential Worl^ (iii): Ways of Righteousness 


Two badly fragmented copies of a Wisdom composition portray tlie 
beliaviour of tine rigliteous man in universal terms. However, since tlie 
vocabulary of 4Q421 1 i echoes the terminology of the Community 
Rule, the whole work may be classified as sectarian. 
For the editio princeps, see T. Elgvin, DJD, XX, 1 73-202. 

4Q420, fr. 1 (4Q421,fr. 1 ii) 

II to practise righteousness in the ways of God (4Q421 ii). 

... he shall not reply before he has heard, 

nor shall he speak before he has gained understanding. 

He shall patiently respond and... shall issue a word. 

He shall seek truth (and) judgement 

and by searching righteousness he shall find its outcome. 

A humble and modest man shall not turn back 


A faithful man shall not depart from the ways of righteousness 

and he shall set his heart on ... 

and the bones (of) his hands on ... 

He shall be redeemed through righteousness; 

through understanding... his fields. 

His territory... 

to [practise ri]ghteousness ... 

4Q421,fr. 1a i 

... [He shall bring all] his wisdom, knowledge, understanding and good 
things [into the Community of God] ... (cf. 1QS 1, 11-12) to regulate aii 
(piacement of) one before another... tlie first lot will fall. And thus they 
shaii set out... (cf. 1 QS 1 1 , 21 -23). 

A Sapiential Worit Instruction-lilte Composition 


The main aim of this poetic composition is to instruct the just man how 
to ensure the progress of wisdom by not entrusting its propagation to 
the unworthy. Palaeographically it is dated to the second half of the first 
century BCE. 

For the editio princeps, see S. Tanzer, DJD, XXXVI, 333-46. 

Fr. 1 

... and he will choose to build it, 

and will spread plaster on its wall. 

He too ... will become loose because of the rain. 

Do not learn a precept in the company of hypocrites 

nor come to the furnace with a totterer, 

for he will melt away like lead, 

and will not stand up to the fire... 

and do not entrust a sleepy man with something delicate, 

for he will not treat your work gently... 

Do not send... learning (?), 

for he will not smooth down your paths. 

Do not [send... ] a grumbler to procure money for your 


nor put your trust in a man with twisted lips, 

[for] he will surely twist your judgement by his Hps. 

His desire will not follow the truth, 

... by the fruit of his lips. 

Do not put a stingy man in charge of mone[y]. 

... mete out your food according to your desire... 

... tliose wlio bring abundance... 

but at tlie time of gatliering lie wiii be found ungodiy. 

Tlie sliort-tempered... tine simpie, 

for lie wiii sureiy swaiiow tliem up ... 

Fr. 3 

... and he wiii not do his deed by weighing it. 

A man who judges before inquiry, 

and one who beiieves before ... , 

do not put him in charge of those who pursue l<nowiedge, 

for he wiii not understand their manner 

so as to justify the just and deciare the wici<ed [wici<ed]; 

he too wiii be for contempt. 

Do not send a biind man to bring a vision to the upright; 
ii[i<ewise] do not send a man who is hard of hearing to inquire 

into judgement, 

for he wiii not smooth out a quarrei between peopie. 
Lii<e one who scatters into the wind... 
... who does not test, 

so is he who speal<s to an ear which does not iisten, 

and tail<s to a man deep asieep through a spirit... 

Do not send a 'fat-hearted' (dense) man to acquire thoughts, 

for the wisdom of his heart is hidden, 

and he wiii not be in charge o[f his heart], 

and wiii not find wisdom for his hands. 

An inteiiigent man gains unjderstanding], 

a i<nowing man wiii bring forth wisdom... 

an upright man deiights injustice, 

a man of truth rejjoices in] ... 

a mighty man is zeaious for... 

He is an adversary to aii changers of boundaries, 

... righteousness for the poor of... 

He disputes with aii wlio move tlie boundaries. 
A mercifui man [gives] aims to tlie poor. 
He is concerned for aii tliose witliout property 
The sons of righteousness... 

The Two Ways 


Inspired by Deuteronomy xi, 26-28, this fragmentary text, 
paiaeograpiiicaiiy dated to the end of the first century BCE, is akin to 
the instruction on the Two Spirits in the Community Rule (1 QS 111,13- 

IV, 25). 

For the editio phnceps, see T. Elgvin, DJD, XXII, 289-99. 

... and He has placed [before you] t[wo] ways one which is goo[d and 
one which is evil. If you choose the good way], He wiii bless you. But if 
you walk in the [evil] way [He will curse you] ... and in your [te]nts, and 
He will destroy you with ... and mildew, snow, ice and hai[l] ... with all. 

Bless, My Soul 

(Barki nafshi^"^, 4Q434-438) 

Cave 4 has yielded five manuscripts (4Q434-438) of a poetic 
composition designated by the opening words of the f rst section as 
Barki nafshi or 'Bless, my soul'. A sixth manuscript (4Q439) is said to 
be akin to it. The pieces translated are not unlike some of the 
Thanksgiving Hymns, but include no sectarian features. 

For the editio princeps, see M. Weinfeld and D. Seely, DID, XXIX, 

4Q434, fr. I 

Bless, my soul, the Lord 

for all His marvels for ever, 

and may His name be blessed. 

For He has delivered the soul of the poor, 

and has not despised the humble, 

and has not forgotten the misery of the deprived. 

He has opened His eyes towards the distressed, 

and has heard the cry of the fatherless, 

and has turned His ears towards their crying. 

He has been gracious to the humble by His great kindness, 

and has opened their eyes to see His ways, 

and [thei]r e[ar]s to hear His teaching. 

He has circumcised the foreskin of their heart, 

and has delivered them because of His kindness, 

and has directed their feet towards the way. 

He has not forsaken them amid the multitude of their 


neither lias He lianded tliem over to the violerrt, 

nor lias He judged tliem togetlner witli the wicl<ed. 

[He has] not [directed] His anger against them, 

neither did he annihiiate them in His wrath. 

Whiie all His furious wrath was not growing weary, 

He has not judged them in the fire of His ardour, 

but He has judged them in the greatness of His mercy. 

The judgements of His eyes were to try them, 

and He has brought His many mercies among the nations, 

[and from the hand of] men He has delivered them. 

He has not judged them (amid) the mass of nations, 

and in the midst of peoples He has not judged [them]. 

But He hid them in [His] ... 

He has turned darkness into light before them, 

and crooked places into level ground. 

He has revealed to them abundance of peace and truth. 

He has made their spirit by measure, 

and has established their words by weight, 

and has caused them to sing(?) like flutes. 

He has given them a [perfect] heart, 

and they have walked in the w[ay of His heart]. 

He has also caused them to draw near to the w[ay of his 


For they have pledged their spirit. 

He sent and covered them and commanded that no plague 

[should affect them]. 

His angel fixed his camp around them; 

He guarded them lest [the enemy?] destroy them. 

Fr. 1 ii 

II... in [their] misery [and] afflicti[on]s [and] He de[liver]ed them [from] all 

... and Thou hast done for them against the sons of man and Thou hast 

delivered them for Thy sake. 

... arxl they expiated for their iniquities and the iniquities of their 
fathers, and they atoned in wa[ter] ... 

... by Thy judgements and to the way which Thou didst teach again... 


... to comfort the poor woman for her mourning the nations to 

[desjtruction and He will raze the peoples. And the wicked... 
Renew the works of the heaven and of the earth, 
And they will exult and [the whole earth] will be filled with His glory 
He will atone [for] their [guilt] and great goodness will comfort them. 
... eating its fruit and goodness. 

Like a man comforted by his mother, so will He comfort them in 

Like a bridegroom] with the bride, so will He dwel[l] with her [for e]ver. 
[Fo]r His throne is for ever and ever and His glory ... and all the nations. 
... the arm[yof heav]en will be in it and their delightful [l]and... 
I will bless the Blessed be the name of the Most Hi[gh] ... 


... their portions from there from the des[ert to] the gate of hope. 

And He made a covenant with them for peace with the birds [of 

hea]ven and the beasts of the field. 

He made manure of their enemies. He ground Edom and Moab into 

4Q436 (combined with 4Q435i) 

I understanding to strengthen the contrite heart and the spirit (which is) 
in it for ever; to comfort ttie weak in the time of their distress and the 

hands of the fallen so that they may rise; to make instruments of 
knowledge; to give knowledge to the wise and the upright to increase 
understanding; so that they may understand Thy deeds which Thou 
hast done in the years of old, in the years of all generations. Eternal 
understanding which... before me, arid Thou keepest Thy law before 
me and Thou hast entrusted Thy covenant to me. And Thou dost 
strengthen the heart... to walk In Thy ways. Thou hast visited my heart 
and Thou hast sharpened my kidneys (affections) that they may not 
forget Thy precepts.... Thou hast... Thy law. Thou hast opened my 
kidneys and hast strengthened me to pursue Thy ways... Thou hast 
made my mouth irrto a sharp sword and opened my tongue for words 
of holiness. Arxl Thou hast set discipline [on them] that they may not 
meditate on man's actions, on the whisper of his lips. Thou hast 
strengthened my feet... and with Thy hand Thou hast strengthened my 
right hand. And Thou hast sent me on the straigh[t path]. 

... Thou hast chased away from me. And Thou hast placed a pure 
heart in its stead; Thou hast chased away the evil inclination [from my] 

II And Thou hast placed [the spirit of holine]ss into my heart and hast 
taken away from me the eyes of fornication. And Thou hast looked 

... Thy [wa]ys; Thou hast removed from me the stiff neck and 
replaced it with humility Thou hast taken away [from me] the rage of 
anger and hast placed in me the spirit of patience [4Q435, fr. 1]. A 
haughty heart and lofty eyes Thou hast... from me ... to me. Thou hast 
blotted out the spirit of lies [4Q435 1] ... hast given me ... 

4Q437 (combined with 4Q434-5) 


I... from the congregation of the seekers after... 

They have concealed [a net] to catch me and they pursued [my] sou[l]. 

... their [swor]d penetrated their heart and their bows were broken. 

[For all thi]s I will bless Thy name during my life, for Thou hast delivered 
me from the trap of the nations ... [peo]ples. 

Thy mercies are a shield around me and Thou hast guarded my soul 
among the nations... 

Thou hast [not] made my friends ashamed of me. 
I have not forgotten Thy precepts. 

In the affliction of [my] soul [Thou hast not forsaken me, arxJ] Thou hast 

not hidden Thy face from my supplications. 

Thou hast seen all my meanings and my lnlqultle[s] ... 

When my spirit was fainting. Thou hast listened to my voice. 

[Thou hast hlldden [me] In Thy quiver [and] ... me. 

Thou hast made of me a pointed arrow; Thou hast concealed me in the 

hiding place of Thy palm. 

[... and from the mud] Thou hast delivered me lest I sink In It, and from 
the stream of the gentiles lest it sweep me away and from... arxJ I sank 
In Its depth. 

And from hell Thou hast brought up my soul. 

Thou hast placed life [before me] and Thou hast seated the 

congregation of the men of marvels before me. 

And among the children of righteousness Thou hast comforted me. 

And according to the line of judgement Thou hast cheered up my soul. 

And according to the weight of justice Thou hast vivified my spirit. 

I bless the Lord with al[l my power and I praise] His [g]oodness with the 

joy of my heart. 

I have remembered Thee, O Lord, and my heart Is firm bjefojre Thee. 

I have hoped In Thy salvation, O Lord... I have remembered. 

And my heart has rejoiced and my horn will rise towards Thee. 

My soul thirsts. [My] soul [cjleaves to Thee. On thy deeds will I 


I have remembered Thee on my [couc]h during the watches of the 

A Leader's Lament 


Two small fragments have survived of a poetic lament by a person in 
auttiority. The text is too small to allow us to detennine whether these 
are the words or pseudepigraphic words of a head of the sectarian 

For the editio princeps, see M. Weinfeld and D. Seeiy, DJD, XXIX, 
335^1 . 

Fr. 1 i 

I... [to] assemble the right[eous] of my people and to establish the way 
of life ... 

[to brinjg into the covenant the men of my company... my inheritance. 
Therefore my eyes are a spring of water... discipline and those who will 
stand up after them, who ... 

And behold my whole city has changed into thorns... 

[Bejhold all my judges have become fooli[sh] ... my righteous ones 

simple-minded, wh[o] ... traitors... 

Fight against Evil Spirits 


The main purpose of the person reciting this prayer, of which six small 
fragments have survived, is to curse the spirits of wickedness. The 
genre is the same as 4Q510-1 1 . 
For the editio princeps, see E. Chazon, DJD, XXIX, 367-78. 

Fr. 1-4 i 

I As for me, on account of my fear of God He has opened my 

And through His holy spirit... truth for all [thesje. 

They have become spirits of dispute in my body, 

Precept[s of] ... [from] the frame of the flesh. 

And God has placed in [my] h[eart] 

the spirit of knowledge and understanding, truth and 


And fortify yourself by the precepts of God, 

And to fight against the spirit of wickedness and not... 

Misjudgements. Cursed be ... 

Songs of the Sage 


Scraps of two manuscripts from Cave 4 (4Q510-11) represerrt a 
mixture of sapientiai psaims and poems of exorcism. Tlieir editor, M. 
Baiiiet fDJD, Vii, 215-62), assigns the script to tlie end of ttie first 
century BCE, or tlie tuming of tlie era. Ttie first fragment preserves an 
interesting iist of names of demons. 


... praises. Ben[edictions for the K]ing of giory. Words of thanl<sgiving 
in psalms of., to the God of knowledge, the Splendour of power, the 
God of gods. Lord of all the hoiy [His] domlnl[on] is over aii the 
powerfui mighty ones and by the power of his might aii shaii be terrified 
and shaii scatter and be put to flight by the splendour of the dwei[iing] 
of his l<ingly giory. And i, the iVlaster, proclaim the majesty of his beauty 
to frighten and ter[rify] aii the spirits of the destroying angeis and the 
spirits of the bastards, the demons, Llllth, the howlers (?) and [the 
yeipers ...] they who strike suddenly to iead astray the spirit of 
understanding and to appai their heart and their... in the age of the 
domination of wickedness and the appointed times for the humiliation 
of the sons of ligh[t], in the guilt of the ages of those smitten by iniquity, 
not for eternal destruction but for the humiliation of sin. Exalt, O just, the 
God of marvels. My psalms are for the upright... May all whose way is 
perfect exalt him. 

4Q511,fr. 1 

... [on the ea]rth and in all the spirits of his dominion always. Let the 
seas b[le]ss him in their turn and all the creatures living in them. May 
they proclaim the ... of beauty all of them. Let them rejoice before the 
God of justice with shouts of salvation, for there shall be no destroyer in 
their territories, and no spirit of wickedness shall wall< in there. For the 
glory of the God of knowledge has shone forth in his words, and none 
of the sons of iniquity shall endure. 


I For the Master. [First] Song. Praise the name of his holiness; all who 
know [justice], exalt him... He put an end to the chief of the dominations 
without... eternal Ooy] and everlasting life, to cause light to shine ... his 
[Ijot is the best of Jacob and the inheritance of G[o]d ... of Israel ... they 
who guard the way of God and the pat[h] of his [holjiness for the saints 
of his people. By the discerning knowledge [of Go]d, he placed Israel 
in twelve camps ... the iot of God with the ange[ls] of the luminaries of 
his glory. In his name the praises... he has established for the feast of 
the year and for a common government that they may walk [in] the lot of 
[God] according to [his] glory [and] serve him in the lot of the people of 
his throne. For the God of... 


[For the Master]. Second [Sjong to frighten those who terrify him... 

II I have hated all the works of impurity For God has caused the 
knowledge of understanding to shine in my heart. Just chastisers 

(deal) with my perversity, arxJ faithiful judges withi all my sirrfijl guilt. For 
God Is my judge and by the hand of a stranger [He] shall not ... 

Frs. 28-9 

... [ttiey shall] rejoice in God with jubilation. And I [will thank Thjee for, 
because of Thy glory, Thou hast [sjet knowledge on my foundations of 
dust to pr[aise Thee].... outof a shape [of clay] was I moulded and from 
darkness was I kneaded... and iniquity Is In the limbs of my flesh ... 


Thou hast sealed... the [ejarth ... and they are deep. [The heavens and 
the heavens of the] heavens, and the abysses and the dar[k places of 
the earth] ... Ttx)u, O my God, hast sealed them all and there is none to 
open (them) ... Does one measure by the hollow of a human hand the 
waters of the great (ocean)? Are [the heavens estimated by the span 
(of fingers)? In one third (of a measure)] can any contain the dust of the 
earth, and weigh the mountains In a balance, or the hills In scal[es]? 
Man did not make these. How can he measure the spirit of [God]? 


... God in all flesh, and an avenging judgement to destroy wickedness, 
and for the raging anger of God towards those seven times refined. 
God shall sancti[fy] (some) of the holy as an everlasting sanctuary for 
himself, and purity shall endure among the cleansed. They shall be 
priests, his righteous people, his host, servants, the angels of his glory. 
They shall praise him with marvellous prodigies. I, I spread the fear of 
God in the ages of my generations to exalt the name ... [to terrify] by his 
might al[l] the spirits of the 'bastards', subduing them by [his] fear... 


II ... I will bless Thy name and in my appointed periods I will recount Thy 
marvels and I will engrave them as precepts of Thy glory's praises. At 
the beginning of every thought of a knowing heart and (with) the 
offering of that which flows from the righteous lips when ready for all 
true worship and with all... 


III As for me, my tongue shall extol Thy righteousness, for Thou hast 
released it. Thou hast placed on my lips a fount of praise and in my 
heart the secret of the commencement of all human actions and the 
completion of the deeds of the perfect of way and the judgements 
regarding all the service done by them, justifying the just by Thy truth 
and condemning the wicked for their guilt. To announce peace to all 
the men of the Covenant and to utter a dreadful cry of woe for all those 
who breach it ... IV May they bless all Thy works always and blessed 
be Thy name for ever and ever. Amen, amen. 



The title given to this piece of wisdom poetry, consisting of fifty mostly 
small fragments palaeographically dated to the second half of the first 
century BCE, derives from the repeated use of 'Blessed' ('ashre), 
modelled on Ps. i, 1, and recalling the Beatitudes of the New 
Testament (Matth. v, 3-11). The main structural difference between 
IVIatthew and 4Q525 lies in that the former each time iists the reward of 
the virtue for which people are blessed, whereas the Cave 4 text 
provides ordinary, mostly antithetic, parallelisms instead. 
For the editio princeps, see E. Puech, DJD, XXV, 1 1 5-78. 

Fr. 2 

II [Blessed is] ... with a pure heart 

and does not slander with his tongue. 

Blessed are those who hold to her (Wisdom's) precepts 

and do not hold to the ways of iniquity. 

Blessed are those who rejoice in her, 

and do not burst forth in ways of folly. 

Blessed are those who seek her with pure hands, 

and do not pursue her with a treacherous heart. 

Blessed is the man who has attained Wisdom, 

and walks in the Law of the IVIost High. 

He directs his heart towards her ways, 

and restrains himself by her corrections, 

and always takes delight in her chastisements. 

He does not forsake her when he sees distress, 

nor abandon her in time of strain. 

He will not forget her [on the day of] fear. 

and will not despise [her] when his soul Is afflicted. 
For always he will meditate on her, 
and In his distress he will consider [her?] 

[He will place her] before his eyes, 
so as not to walk In the ways of [folly]. 

Fr. 5 

[Do not] forsake your [lnherl]tance [to the nations] 

nor your portion to strangers... 

For the wise... will Instruct with sweetness. 

Those who [f|ear God observe her (Wisdom's) ways 

and walk In [all] her precepts 

and do not reject her corrections. 

The Intelligent will bring out... 

[and all] those who walk In perfection 

will turn aside Injustice, 

but they will not reject her admonitions 

and will carry [her] ... 

The sensible will recognize her ways 

[and meditate on (?)] her depths. 

... will look. 

Those who love God will withdraw to It (Wisdom) ... 

Fr. 14 ii 

II... your feet will [walk] In an open place and you will advance on 
the high grou[nd of] your [ejnemy. 

[You will love God with all your heart and with all] your soul, and 
He will deliver you from all evil. 

Terror will not come upon you... He will make you Inherit. 

He will fill your days with good and you will w[alk] In great peace will Inherit glory. 

And you will end up In the eternal resting place... 
And all who know you will walk together following your teaching; 
... will mourn together and will remember you In your ways. 
For you were g[ood] ... 

And now, listen to me, O man of understanding, 
And let your mind be attentive to the utter[ances of my lips]. 
Allow knowledge to enter your heart (literally: belly) ... 
Express [your] utterances with just humility [and] give [not] ... 
[Do not] turn against the words of your friend so that he will not... 
to you. 

Answer as is proper to him who listens to you. 

[Do not] pour out your thought before you have heard their 
words... greatly. 

First listen to their utterance and afterwards answer ... [With 
long-]suffering express them and answer correctly among 

... with your lips and a stumbling block of the tongue. 
Beware greatly... lest you are caught by your lips 

As well as ensnared by [your] tongue unseemly words... 

from me and were twisted... 

F. Bible Interpretation 

'The Targum of Job', Israel Antiquities Authority 

Introductory Note 

Five types of biblical commentary have been recovered from the 
Qumran caves. 

The first and least developed form of exegesis is contained in the 
so-called 'Reworked Pentateuch' texts, consisting of a quasi- 
traditional text of the Bible, occasionally rearranged and 
supplemented. To this category belong 4Q158, 364-7, 422, 382, etc. 
The Temple Scroll {11Q19-20) may also be assigned to this group, as 
well as the fairly though not strictly literal Aramaic translations or 
Targums of the Hebrew Scriptures (4Q156-7; 11Q10), to which should 

be added some small fragments of the Greek Bible from Caves 4 and 

The second type, represented by the Genesis Apocryphon, sets out 
to render the Bible story more Intelligible and attractive by giving It 
more substance, by reconciling conflicting statements, arxJ by 
reinterpreting In the light of contemporary starxJards and beliefs any 
passages which migfit seem to give offence, in a somewhat similar 
manner, a Commentary on Genesis from Cave 4 (4Q252) attempts to 
adjust the chronology of the Flood to the specific sectarian calendar of 
the Qumran Community. 

The third type of commentary departs from the biblical text and, 
relying on one or several passages, creates a new story. Among 
others, the Admonition associated with tfie Flood (4Q370, 185), the 
Words of Moses (1Q22), the New Jerusalem texts (4Q554-5, 5Q15, 
etc.) and the Prayer of Nabonidus (4Q242), Inspired by Genesis, 
Deuteronomy, Ezeklel and Daniel respectively, come into this 

The fourth and most characteristic form of exegesis applies 
prophetic texts to the past, present and future of the sect. Normaiiy the 
commentator expounds a biblical book verse by verse, e.g. Isaiah 
(4Q161-4); Nahum (4Q169); Habakkuk (IQpHab); the Psalms 
(4Q171, 173), etc., but some works - A Midrash on the Last Days 
(4Q174), The Heavenly Prince Melchizedek (11Q13), etc. - follow the 
traditional Jewish example and assembie passages from different 
parts of Scripture In order to develop a common theme. 

Finally, a substantial amount of free compositions modelled on the 
Blbie,e.g. Jubilees (4Q216-28), Enoch and the Giants (4Q201-12, 
530-33), or circulating together with the Bible, e.g. the Para-Danlellc 
fragments (4Q243-5), and works attributed to Noah {1Q19, etc.), the 
Patriarchs Levi (4Q213-14, 537-41), Moses (4Q374-7, 390), and 
many others constitute a fifth category of exegesis. In one way, the 
Aramaic and Hebrew manuscripts of one of the Apocrypha, the Book 
of Tobit (4Q1 96-200), pertain to this class. 

Aramaic Bible Translations 


Two books of the Hebrew Bible have survived in Aramaic translation in 
the Qumran caves. A small scroll, found in Cave 11 and measuring 
109 cm, has preserved in Aramaic a large portion of the last seven 
chapters of the Book of Job. Twenty-seven smaller fragments cover 
parts of Job xvii, 14 to xxxvi, 33. This text, together with small remains 
from Cave 4 of Leviticus (4Q156=xW, 12-21, see below) and of 
another manuscript of Job (4Q157=iii, 5-9; iv, 16-v, 4), represent the 
oldest extant Aramaic renderings of the Hebrew Bible. The translation 
of Job frequently differs from the customary text of the Hebrew Bible, 
but it is unclear whether the divergences are due merely to the difficulty 
of translating poetry, or to a Hebrew original not Identical with the 
traditional Scripture. 

Hebrew Jobxl, 12 

Look on every one that is proud and bring him low; and tread 
down the wicked where they stand. 
11 QarJob 

And every proud spirit you will smash; and extinguish the 
wicked below them. 

It is clear, on the other hand, that the prose narrative of xlii, 9-11 
displays notable departures from the text known to us, as may be seen 
from the following parallel translations: 

Hebrew Job xlii 

(9) So Eliphazthe Temanlte and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar 
the Naamathite went and did what the Lord had told them; and 

the Lord accepted Job's prayer. (1 0) And the Lord restored the 
11 QarJob 

(9)... God. God heard the voice of Job and forgave them (his 
friends') their sins because of him. (10) And God returned 
fortunes of Job, when he had prayed for his friends; and the 
Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. (11) Then 
came to him all his brothers and sisters and all who had l<nown 
him before, and ate bread with him in his house; and they 
showed him sympathy and comforted him for all the evil that the 
Lond had brought upon him; and each of them gave him a piece 
of money (or: sheep) and a ring of gold, to Job with mercy and 
doubled all that he had owned. (11) All his friends, brothers and 
acquaintances came to Job and they ate bread with him in his 
house, and they comforted him for all ttie misery that God had 
brought on him and each gave him a ewe-lamb and a ring of 

The English version provided below (Job xxxvii, 11 to xlii, 11) should 
therefore be read side by side with the translation of the canonical Job. 
It will be noticed that Job xxxlx, 24 is missing from the Aramaic and xlii, 
3 is replaced by xl, 5. Furthermore, in Job xxxviii, 7 the phrase 'angels' 
is substituted for 'sons of God', a doctrinally suspect expression since 
Jews rejected the idea of God having children. The same substitution 
is found in the Greek Septuagint and the Targum of Job used in 
rabbinic Judaism. Similarly the Targum to Lev. xvi, 14 and xvi, 20 
(4Q156) specifies, as do the later Targums, that 'the Holy designates 
'the House of Holiness' or 'Sanctuary'. In short, the Qumran Targums 
prefigure to some extent the style of the later Targums without 
attesting, however, the exegetical expansions which characterize the 
Palestinian Targums to the Pentateuch. 

For the editio princeps of 11Q10, see J. P. M. van der Ploeg et a/., 
Le Targum de Job de la gmtte XI de Qumran (Leiden, 1 971 ); for a 
new edition, see F. Garcia Martinez, E. J. C. Tigchelaar and A. S. van 
der Woude, DJD, XXIII, 79-180. For the Targums of Leviticus and Job 
(4Q1 56, 1 57), see J. T. Milik, DJD, VI, 85-91 . 

The Targum of Job 


XXVIII (Jobxxxvii, 24-30) 

(24) [Re]member that His works which they see are great. 

(25) Every man lool<s at Him, 

and the sons of men from afar search for Him. 

(26) Behold, God is great, 

and His days are numerous beyond [knowledge 
and the sum of His years is infinite. 

(27) Behold, [He counts] the [rain] clouds 
and He establishes the downpours. 

(28) And His clouds let down dr[ops of water 
on] a multitude of people. 

(29) If He who spreads [the] cl[ouds] of His thunder 
and spreads [His] light [... and co]vers. 

For by them He judges peoples... 

yoax. (Jobxxxvii) 

(1 1 ) With it (water) He wipes the cloud[s], 
and brings fire out of the cloud. 

(1 2) He speaks and they listen to Him 
and proceed with their works. 

He appoints them over all 
that He has created on earth: 

(1 3) either for striking or for (benefiting) the 

either for famine or shortage; 
or for something good to be on it. 

(14) Listen to this, Job, and arise! 

Observe the might of God. 

(1 5) [Do you] know what God has put on them 

and how He has made light to shine from the cloud? 

(16) [Do you k]now how to robe the cloud with 

(1 7) Because your robe ... 

For He possesses knowledge... 

(18) [Do you know how to] beat the cloud 
[to] compress [it into a mir]ror? 

(19) He knows... 

XXX (Job xxxviii) 

(3) Please gird [your] lo[ins] like a man, 

[and I will que]stion you and you will answer me. 

(4) Where were you when I made the earth? 
Explain it to me if you possess wisdom. 

(5) Do you know who fixed its measures? 
Who stretched a line over it? 

(6) Or to what were its foundations joined 
or who set its cut stone 

(7) when the morning stars were shining together 
and all the angels of God exclaimed together? 

(8) Can you shut in the sea with gates 

when it bursts forward from the womb of the abyss, 

(9) when the clouds were made into its robe 
and the haze its swaddling-clothes. 

(10) Can you set boundaries to it ... ? 

(11) Did you say. Up to here! 

And you must not go beyond... [your wa]ves. 

(1 2) In your days did you order [the morning] 

(13) ... the win[gs] of the ear[th] ... 

XXXI (23)... 

for the day of battle and revolt. 

(24) ... from where will (the wind) go out 
and will it blow before Him on the earth? 

(25) Who fixed a time for the rain 

and a path for the quick clouds 

(26) to bring it (the rain) down to a land of wilderness 
with no man on it, 

(27) to satiate the low-lying and isolated (places) 
to produce sprouting grass. 

(28) Has the rain a father 

and who begets the mist of dew? 

(29) And from whose womb did ice come out 

(30) The waters contracted like a st[one] because of 

and the face of the ab[yss?] ... 

(31) ... Pleiades or the fence of Orion ... 
XXXII fJobxxx/xJ 

(1 ) the mountain goats, and the birth p[angs] ... 

(2) ... their months are completed, 
and do you know when they give birth, 

(3) delivering their young and ejecting them, 
and do you send away their birth pangs? 

(4) They raise their young and make them go; 
they depart and do not come back to them. 

(5) Who has set the wild ass free 

and who has loosed the onager's rope, 

(6) to whom I gave the desert for his home 
and made the salty land his dwelling. 

(7) He laughs at the great commotion of the city 
and his master's urging he does not hear. 

(8) He chooses for himself mountains for [pasture] 
and he goes after everything green. 

(9) Does the wild ox wish to serve you 
or will he lodge in your stable? 

(1 0) Will you tie [the wild ox] with a yoke 
and will he plough(?) in the valley [afl]er you? 
And will you... 

Will you depend on hi[m because] great is 
[his strength]? 


(20) Will you frighten him (the horse) with a strong... 
his... is fear and dread. 

(21 ) He searches out the valley, he trembles and 

and mightily advances towards the sword. 

(22) He laughs at fear and does not shudder, 
and does not turn back from the sword. 

(23) Upon him hangs a lance, 
a javelin and a sharp sword, 

(25) and at the sound of the trumpet, he says. Aha, 
and from afar he smells the battle, 

and he enjoys the rattle of the weapons and the war 

(26) Does the hawk get excited because of your wisdom 
and spread his wings towards the winds? 

(27) Or does [the eagle] rise at your order 
and the bird of prey build [its] nest on high? 

(28) It dwells on the rock and nests... 
XXXIV fJobx/J... 

(6) [From...] and from the cloud 
God answered Job and said to him: 

(7) Like a man, please gird your loins; 

I will question you, and you will answer me. 

(8) Would you indeed tear up the judgement 
and declare me guilty so that you may be 

(9) Or do you have an arm like God 
or thunder with a voice like his? 

(1 0) Throw away, please, pride and haughtiness 
and you will put on splendour, glory and honour. 

(11) Throw away, please, the heat of your wrath 
and observe every proud man and humble him. 

(12) And every proud spirit you will smash 
and you will extinguish the wicked [in] their 

(1 3) And hide them all In the dust 
[and] cover [with a]shes ... 

(23) ... the Jordan Its banks, 

he (the hippopotamus) trusts that he will get It. 

(24) When he lifts his eyes, who will restrain him, 
... his nose with a hook. 

(25) Will you pull a crocodile with a hook 
or tie up Its tongue with a rope? 

(26) Will you put a muzzle on his nose 

and will you pierce his cheek with your chisel? 

(27) Will he speak gently with you 
or will he speak with you pleadingly? 

(28) Will he make a covenant with you 

or will you handle him as a slave for ever? 

(29) Will you play with him like a b[lrd, 
and] will you bind him with a string for your 

XXXVI (Jobxii) 

(8) They cling to one another 

and no breath passes between them. 

(9) One holds to another, 
and they do not separate. 

(10) His sneezing lights fire between his 

like the shine of dawn (?). 

(11) Torches come forth out of his mouth; 
they leap like tongues of fire. 

(12) From his nostrils smoke goes forth 
like burning thorn and Incense. 

(1 3) His breath spews out coals 
and sparks come out of his mouth. 

(14) His strength dwells In his neck 
and vigour springs before him. 

(1 5) The folds of his flesh are clinging, 
mould[ed over him] like Iron. 

(16) [His] heart... like stone 

XXXVII (Jobxii-xlii) 

and lie is king over all the reptiles. 

(1 ) Job answered and said before God: 

(2) I know that Thou canst do all things 
and dost not lack in strength and wisdom, 
(xl, 5) I have spoken once and will not 
revoke it, 

a second time, and I will not add to it. 

(xlii, 4) Listen, please, and I will speak; 

I will question you and you must answer me. 

(5) I had heard of you by the hearing of the 


and now my eyes see you. 

(6) Therefore I am melting and dissolve 
and become dust and ashes... 

XXXVIII (9) ... God. God heard the voice of Job and forgave them their 
sins because of him. (10) And God returned to Job with mercy and 
doubled all that he had owned. (11) All his friends, brothers and 
acquaintances came to Job and they ate bread with him in his house, 
and they comforted him for all the misery that God had brought on him 
and each gave him a ewe-lamb and a ring of gold. 

The Targum of Leviticus 



And he (Aaron) shall take some [of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it 
with his finger o]n the mercy seat. And before the mercy seat - to the 
east - [he shall sprinkle fr]om the blood with his finger [seven times] 
(Lev. xvi, 14).... 


... Whe[n he has made an end of atoning] for the House of Holiness 
[and for] the tent of meeting and [for ttie altar, he shall offer] a live goat 
(Lev. xvi, 20).... 



Compared to the quantity of Hebrew arxJ Aramaic manuscripts, tlie 
Greel< documents found in two of the Qumran caves, Caves 4 and 7, 
are remarl<ably fow, and this scarcity is significant in itself as regards 
the cultural identity of the Qumran Community. Those which have been 
Identified with certainty belong to the Greel< translation of the Bible, 
mostly the Pentateuch. Cave 4 has yielded remains of two scrolls of 
Leviticus, one of leather (4Q1 1 9) and one of papyrus (4Q1 20), as well 
as one of Numbers (4Q121) and of Deuteronomy (4Q122), all dating 
to the second or the first century BCE. On the wtxjie, they represent the 
traditional text of the Septuagint with minor variations such as a word 
being replaced by Its synonym (harvesting by threshing, for example, 
or nation by people), but 4QLXX Numbers (4Q121) testifies to an 
effort to bring the LXX closer to the Hebrew Pentateuch. Since the 
translation scarcely differs from the original, there is no purpose In 
reproducing It. However, It Is worth rwting that In Lev. iv, 27 (4Q120, fr 
20, 4) the Tetragram (the divine name YHWH) is rendered semi- 
phonetically as lao, and is not replaced, as was customary later, by the 
Greek Kurios (Lord). 

Among the nineteen minute fragments found in Cave 7 - which 
contained only Greel< texts - two have been identified as relics of 
Exodus xxviii, 4-7 (7Q1) and the Letter of Jeremiah, verses 43-4 
(7Q2). The former is said to be closer to the traditional Hebrew text 
than to the LXX. Both are dated to about 100 BCE. 



The remaining two Greel< texts in Cave 4 date roughly to the turn of the 
era. One (4Q126) cannot be identified and the other (4Q127) is either 
a paraphrase of Exodus, mentioning among others Pharaoh, Moses 
and Egypt, or possibiy an apocryphai account of Israel in Egypt. 

Seventeen out of the nineteen minute Greek papyrus fragments from 
Cave 7 have been declared by the editors to be unidentifiable. Yet 
against all verisimilitude, several of them have generated sensational 
and even revolutionary claims, especially that they represented the 
earliest textual examples of the Greek New Testament. 

The contention originated with a Spanish Jesuit, Jose O'Callaghan, 
who in 1972 persuaded himself that these hardly legible scraps 
derived from six books of the New Testament: the Gospel of IVIark iv, 
28 (7Q6 1), vi, 48 {7Q15), vi, 52-3 (7Q5), xii, 17 (7Q7); the Acts of the 
Apostles xxviii, 38 (7Q6 2); 1 Timothy ill, 16, iv, 1, 3 (704); James i, 
23-4 (708) and even one of the latest New Testament writings, 2 Peter 
1,15 (701 0). Of these, the case for IVIark vi, 52-3 is purported to be the 
'strongest'. The real facts are the following. We are dealing with a 
fragment on which the written area measures 3.3 x 2.3 cm. Letters 
appear on four lines; these are of unknown length since both the 
beginning and the end of each line are missing. An unrecognizable 
trace of another letter is observed at the top of the fragment. In the 
editio princeps seventeen letters are identified of which only nine are 
certain. A single complete word has survived: the Greek kai = and! 

The leading experts in the field, the late C. H. Roberts of Oxford and 
the German Kurt Aland, unhesitatingly discarded O'Callaghan's theory. 
Roberts jokingly told me that if he wanted to waste his time, he was 
sure he would be able to 'demonstrate' that 705 belonged to any 
ancient Greek text, biblical or non-biblical. Yet this unlikely and clearly 
unprovable hypothesis was revived in the 1980s by C. P. Thiede and 
others, only to encounter the same fate of summary dismissal as 
Father O'Callaghan's a decade or so earlier. 

For the editio princeps of the 40 and 70 material, see P. W. 
Skehan and E. Ulrich, DJD, IX (Oxford, 1992), 161-97, 219-42; M. 

Bailletef a/., DJD,\\\ (Oxford, 1962), 142-6. For the theory that 7Q 
oorrtains New Testament texts, see J. O'Callaghan, Los papipros 
griegos de la cueva 7 deQumran (Madrid, 1974), and C. P. Thiede, 
The Earliest Gospel Manuscripts (London, ^992y, Re-Kindling the 
Word (Valley Forge, Pa, 1996). For views for and against expressed 
at a symposium, see B. Mayer, ed.. Christen und ChrisHiches 
inQumran? (Regensburg, 1992). Against the theory, see C. H. 
Roberts, 'On Some Presumed Papyrus Fragments of the New 
Testament from Qumran', Journal of Theological Studies 23 (1972), 
446-7; K.Aland, 'Neue neutestamentllsche Papyri III', NewTestament 
Study 20 (1973-4), 357-81. For the latest authoritative views, see G. 
Stanton, Gospe/ Truth? (London, 1995); E. Puech, 'Des fragments 
grecs de la grotte 7 et le Nouveau Testament?', RB 102 (1995), 570- 
84; M.-E. Bolsmard (the first decipherer of the fragment), 'Apropos de 
705 et Mc. 6, 52-53', Ibid., 102-4. 

The Reworked Pentateuch (4Q158, 4Q364-7) 

Five badly preserved manuscripts have been classified as reworkings 
of the Pentateuch, i.e. copies of the Torah partly entailing 
rearrangements of biblical passages and partly incorporating 
interpretative supplements inserted into the text. The length of the 
supplement varies from a few words to seven or eight lines, the most 
significant example being the long, but broken, addition to the Song of 
Miriam in 4Q365 6a 11, c. Judging from the surviving passages, the 
original Reworked Pentateuch must have been a very sutistanfial 
document, probably the longest of all the Qumran Scrolls. All the 
manuscripts may be dated on palaeographical grounds to the first 
century BCE. Only those texts which contain more or less intelligible 
supplements (printed in italics) are included. 

For the editio princeps of the Reworked Pentateuch, see J. M. 
Allegro, DJD, V, 1-6 (4Q158) and E. Tovand S. White, DJD, XIII, 187- 
351 (40364-7). 

4Q158, frs. 1-2 (Gen. xxxii, 24-32; Exod. iv, 27-28+Supplement) 

... And [J]ac[ob] w[as left a]lone there. And [a man] wrestl[ed with him. 
When the man did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his thigh; and 
Jacob's thigh was put out of joint] as he wrestled with him and he 
seized him. And he said to hi[m, What is your name? ... And he said to 
him, Jacob. And he said, Your name shall be Israel, for you have 
striven with God and with] men and have prevailed. And Jacob asked 
[and] sal[d, Tell me, pray, what Is your name. And he said. Why Is It 
that you ask my name, and he bless]ed him there. And he said to him, 
'May the Lo[rci] make you fruitful [and multiply] you. [May he grant you 
kn]owledge and understanding and may he save you from all violence 
and ... until this day and until everlasting generations. And he went on 
his way after he had blessed him there. And he ... [And] the sun [rose] 
upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his thigh.... on this 
day. And he said. You shall not e[at the sinew of the hip which is] upon 
the two hollows of the thigh until [this day. (Exod. iv) And the Lond said] 
to Aaron, Go to me[et Moses in the wilderness. So he went arKi met 
him at the mountain of God and kissed him. And Moses told Aaron all] 
the words of the Lord with which he had s[ent] him and all [the signs 
which he had charged him to do. And] the Lord [spoke] to me saying, 
When you bring out Uie (people of Israel] ... to go as slaves and 
behold these are jTour hundred and] thirty (years] ... 

4Q364, fr. 3 (Supplement+Gen. xxviii, 6) 

II you shall see him ... you shall see In peace ... your death. And upon 
[your] eyes ... [Why should I be bereft of] both of you? (Gen. xxvll, 45) 
And [Isaac] caiied [Rebecca his wife and told] her all [these] wor[ds] ... 
after Jacob her son ... And Esau saw that [Isaac had blessed Jacob 
and sent him away to] Pa[dan] Aram to take [a wife] from [there] ... 

4Q365, fr. 6b, 6a ii, 6c (Exod. xv, 16-21+SupplemenHxv, 22-6) 

Fr. 6b 

... till [Thy people, 0 Lord], p[ass by, till the people pass by whom thou 
hast purchased. 

Thou wilt bring them in, and plant them] on thine own mountain, the 
place, [0 Lord, which thou hast made] for thine abode, [the sanctuary 
which thy hands have established]. 
The Lord will reign for ever and ever. 

For when [the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his horsemen] 
went [into the sea, the Lo]rd [brought back] the waters of the sea upon 
them; but the people of Israel walked on dry ground in the midst of the 

[And the water]s were a wall to them on their right and on their left (cf. 
Exod. xiv, 22, 29). [And Miriam the prophetess, sister of Aaron], took 
[a timbrel in her fiand; and al]l the women went out after her with 
[timbrels and dancing. And Miriam sang to them. 
Sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously; the horse and his 
rider he has thrown into the sea]. 

Fr. 6a ii, 6c 

...thou hast despised . . . 
For pride ... 

Thou art great, a saviour... 

The hope of the enemy has perished 

and ... has stopped ... 

They have perished in the mighty mters, 

the enemy ... and lifts up to their height. 

[Thou hast given a ransom] . . . 

... [he \/\ho ac]ts proudly. 

And Moses led [lsrae]l onward from the sea, and they went to the 
wilderness of Sh[ur; they went three days and found no water]. They 
came to Marah, but [they] could [not] drink the water of Marah because 

[it was] bit[ter; therefore it was named Marah]. 
And the people murmured ag[ainst Moses] saying, What shaii we 
drini<? And Moses cried to [the Lord who showed him] a tree, and he 
threw it into [the wate]r, and the water became sweet. There he made 
for them a statute and [an ordinance and there he proved ttiem. And he 
said], if [you wiii lis]ten di[ii]gentiy [to the v]oice of ttie Lord your God 
and do that which is right in his eyes and [give heed to his 
commandments and judgements, and l<eep] aii his statutes, [i wiii put 
none] of the diseases [upon you] which i put on ttie Egyptians. For i am 
the Lord, your [heaie]r. 

Fr. 23 

(Levxxii, 42-xxiv, 2+Supplement) 

You shaii dwell [in bo]oths for seven days; aii that are native in israei 
shaii dweii in booths, tha[t your] gen[erations may l<no]w that i made 
your fathers dwell in booths when i brought them out of the land of 
Egypt; i am the Lord you[r] God. vacaf And IVIoses declared to the 
people of israei the appointed feasts of the Lord, vacaf And the Lord 
said to Moses, Command the children of Israei, say/ng, When you 
enter the land vJiich I am giving to you as an inheritance, and you 
dwell upon it securely, you shall bring mod for a burnt-offering and 
for all the sen/ice of [the Hpuse vJiich you shall build for me in the 
land, to lay it on the altar of bumt-offering, [and] the calves ... for 
Passover sacrifices and peace-offerings and thank-offerings and 
free-wll offerings and burnt-offerings daily ... and for the doors and for 
all the sen/ice of the House you shall offer ... the festival of Oil, the 
tMel[ve tribes] they shall offer wad ... Those who offer on the first day 
shall be Levi and ... [on the Uiird day, Reu]ben and Simeon, [and on] 
thefou[rth] day... 

A Paraphrase of Genesis and Exodus (4Q422) 

Nine fragments of a manuscript written in Hasmonaean cliaracters 
(first lialf of tlie first century BCE) contain a paraphrase of Gen. i-iv, vi- 
ix, judging from disconnected expressions relating to tlie creation of 
tine worid by God's word, to various living creatures, the establishment 
of man as ruler over the rest of beings, the prohibition against eating 
from the tree of knowledge and the rebellion against God which led to 
the fiood. Fr. 1 0 refers to the throwing of Israelite boys into the Nile, the 
commissioning of Moses, his vision of the burning bush, Moses' and 
Aaron's encounter with Pharaoh and the plagues which afflicted Egypt. 
The text can be arranged in three columns. Further unidentified 
fragments, which are not included here, are numbered from A to T. If 
the word ywsr 'm col. 1, line 12 actually means 'inclination', the phrase 
'evil Inclination' could be the eariiest attestation of the rabbinic 

For the editio princeps, see T. Elgvin and E. Tov, DJD, XIII, 41 7-41 . 

I [The heavens and the earth and all] their host He made by [His] 

word. [And God rested on the seventh day from all the work whi]ch He 
had made. And [His] holy spirit ... [all th]e living and creeping 
[creatu]res ... [He put man on the ear]th to rule over it and to eat the 
frui[ts of the ground] ... w[ith]out eating from the tree of kn[owledge of 
good and evil] ... He rose against Him and they forgot ... with an evil 
inclination and for deed[s of] ... peace/payment ... 

II ... [save Noah] and [his] wife and the w[ives of his sons from] the 
waters of the Flood ... God [cl]osed behind them ... the windows of 
heave[n] op[en]ed under all the heav[en ... for] the waters to rise on the 
ear[th forty] days and for[ty] nights was [rain] ov[er] the earth ... and in 
order to krraw the glory of the Most Hi[gh] ... to reach to Him, He 
enlightened the heaven ... sign for generatio[ns] of eternity ... [and 
never more] will a flood [destroy the earth] ... the periods of day and 
night ... to shine [o]n heaven and earth ... Ill ... their [sjons into the rive[r] 

... [And] He sent to them Moses ... in the vision ... in the signs and 
marvels ... And He sent them to Pharaoh ... plagues ... marvels for 
Egypt ... and they carried His word to Pharaoh to send away [their 
people]. But He hardened [his] (Pharaoh's) heart [to] sin so that the 
m[en of lsra]el might l<now for eternal gene[rations]. And He changed 
their [wate]rs to blood. Frogs were in all their land and lice in all their 
territories, gnats in their tK>uses and they struck all their ... And He 
smote with pestile[nce all] ttieir flocl< and their beasts He delivered to 
de[at]h. He pu[t dark]ness into their land and obscurity into their 
[hou]ses so that they could not see one arwther. [And He smote] their 
land with hail and [their] soil [with] frost to cause [al]l tfie fhjit of 
nourishment [to perish]. And He brought locust to cover ttie face of the 
ea[rth], heavy locust in all their territory to eat everything green in [their] 
la[nd] ... And God hardened Ph[araoh's] tieart so that he should not 
[dis]miss [them] ... and in order to increase wonders. [And He smote 
their first-born], the beginning of al[1 their strength] ... 

The Genesis Apocryphon (IQapGen, IQ20) 

Found in Cave 1, and partly published by N. Avigad and Y Yadin (A 
Genesis /Apoc/yp/7on,Jerusalem, 1956), IQapGen is an incomplete 
manuscript with twenty-two surviving columns of Aramaic text (cf. also 
IQ20). Remains of a further column, 'The Genesis Apocryphon Col. 
Xir, have since been edited by J. C. Greenfield and E. Qimron 
(Studies in Qumran Aramaic, Abr-Nabrain, Suppl. 3 (1992), 70-77). A 
preliminary transcription and translation of the rest of the unpublished 
material, deciphered with the help of advanced infra-red technology 
has been issued by M. IVIorgenstern, E. Qimron and D. Sinan in 'The 
Hitherto Unpublished Columns of the Genesis Apocryphon', Abr- 
Nabrain 33 (1995), 3—52. 

The beginning of the manuscript is missing. But since the sheet 
starting with col. v is numbered by the Hebrew letter pe, col. x by sade, 
and col. XVII by qoph, i.e. the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth 
letters of the Hebrew alphabet, it would seem that ttie surviving section 

was preceded by sixteen sheets of wtiicli only tlie end of tlie last one 
has been preserved (cf. M. Morgenstem, 'A New Clue to the Original 
Length of the Genesis Apocryphon', JJS 47/2 (1996), 345—7). If so, 
the story of Noah which begins the existing portion of the scroll must 
have been preceded by an extensive account of the creation, Adam 
and Eve, and the Genesis story up to Enoch and Noah. Columns II — 
narrate the miraculous birth of Noah (on Noah see also the minute 
fragments from 1Q19 and 19bis), whose father, Lamech, suspects that 
his wife has conceived by one of the fallen angels. Her denials fail to 
convince him and he asks his father, Methuselah, to travel to Paradise 
and obtain reassurance from his own father, Enoch. Columns VI — XV 
contain Noah's first-person account of the Flood and of his journeys. 
Col. X describes Noah's sacrifice after the Flood. Col. XI deals with the 
covenant between God and Noah with a mention of a ban on eating 
blood. Col. XII recounts the planting of a vineyard by Noah and his 
tasting of wine. The badly damaged cols. XIII— XV contain a vision 
concerning trees and its interpretation. Two further coiumns (XVI — 
XVII) deai with the division of the earth among the sons of Noah. Col. 
XVIII is completely lost. Cols. XIX — XXII, corresponding to Gen. xii — xv, 
deal with Abraham's journey to Egypt, his return to Canaan, the war 
against the invading Mesopotamian l<ings, and the renewal to him of a 
divine promise of a son. This iiveiy and delightful narrative, largely 
devoid of sectarian bias, throws valuable light on inter-Testamental 
Bible interpretation. It is a mixture of Targum, Midrash, rewritten Bible 
and autobiography Most scholars assign the manuscript to the late 
first century BCE or the first half of the first century CE. The 
composition itself is generaiiy thought to originate from the second 
century BCE. Its relationship to the mid-second-century Book of 
Jubilees is generaiiy accepted, but views differ on whether it depends 
on Jubilees or vice versa. I slightly prefer the theory that in its pre- 
Qumran version the Genesis Apocryphon precedes Jubilees, which 
would postulate for the former a date at least as early as the first half of 
the second century BCE. 

... II Behold, I thought then within my heart that conception was (due) to 
the Watchers and the Holy Ones... and to the Giants... and my heart 

was troubled within me because of this child. Then I, Lamech, 
approached Bathenosh [my] wife in haste and said to her, by the 
Most High, tlie Great Lord, the King of all tlie worlds and Ruler of the 
Sons of Heaven, until you tell me all things truthfully, if... Tell me [this 
truthfully] and not falsely... by the King of all the worlds until you tell me 
truthfully and not falsely.' 

Then Bathenosh my wife spol<e to me with much heat [and] ... said, 
'O my brother, O my lord, remember my pleasure... the lying together 
and my soul within its body. [And I tell you] all things truthfully.' 

My heart was then greatly troubled within me, and when Bathenosh 
my wife saw that my countenance had changed... Then she mastered 
her anger and spoi<e to me saying, 'O my lord, O my [brother, 
remember] my pleasure! I swear to you by the Holy Great One, the 
King of [the heavens] ... that this seed is yours and that [this] 
conception is from you. This fruit was pianted by you... and by no 
stranger or Watcher or Son of Heaven... [Why] is your countenance 
thus changed and dismayed, arxl why is your spirit thus distressed... i 
speai< to you truthfully' 

Then I, Lamech, ran to IVIethuselah my father, and [I told] him all 
these things. [And I asl<ed him to go to Enoch] his father for he would 
surely learn all things from him. For he was beloved, and he shared the 
lot [of the angels], who taught him all things. And when IVIethuselah 
heard [my words... he went to] Enoch his fattier to leam all things 
truthfully from him ... his will. 

He went at once to Parwain and he found him there... [and] he said 
to Enoch his father, 'O my father, O my lord, to whom i... And I say to 
you, lest you be angry with me because I come here... 

VI [I abstained] from injustice and in the womb of her who conceived 
me I searched for truth. And when I emerged from my mother's womb, I 
was planted for truth and I iived aii my days in truth and wali<ed in the 
paths of eternal truth. And the Holy One (was) with me ... on my 
pathways truth sped to warn me off the ... of lie which led to dari<ness ... 
and I girded my loins with the vision of truth and wisdom... paths of 
vioience. vacat Then I, Noah, became a man and ciung to truth and 
seized... and I tool<Amzara, his daughter as my wife. She conceived 
and bore me three sons [and daugtrtersj. Then i tooi< wives for my sons 

from among my brother's daughters, and I gave my daughters to my 
brother's sons according to the law of the etemal precept which the 
l\/lost High [ordained] to the sons of man. vacat And in my days, when 
according to my reckoning... ten jubilees had been completed, the 
(moment) came for my sons to take wives for themselves... heaven, I 
saw In a vision and was explained and made known the action of the 
sons of heaven and... the heavens. Then I hid this mystery In my heart 
and explained it to no man. vacat ... to me and a great and... and in a 
message of the Holy One... and he spoke to me In a vision and he 
stood before me ... 

... and the message of the great Holy One called out to me: 'To you 
they say, O Noah, ...' and I reckoned the whole conduct of the sons of 
the earth. I knew and explained aii... two weeks. Then the biood which 
the Giants had spilled.... I was at ease and waited until... thie holy ones 
with the daughters of man... [Then] i, Noah, found grace, greatness and 

truth tiii the gates of heaven... to men and cattle, and wild beasts 

and birds... 

VII ... on them; the earth and aii that is on it, in the seas and on the 
mountains ... aii the constellations of heaven, the sun, the moon and the 

stars and the Watchers... 

... I shaii reward you... vacaf the great Holy One. And i rejoiced in the 
words of the Lord of heaven and i shouted... it ... you all to your 
iVIaster... the King of aii the world for ever and ever until aii eternity 
vacat ... [until] the ark rested on one of the mountains of Ararat 
(HWRRT). And eternal fire... And i atoned for the whole earth, aii of it. 
And the beginning of... and i burned the fat on the fire. Secondly ... i 
poured out their biood on the base of the altar and I burned all their 
flesh on the altar. And thirdly the turtledoves... on the altar as an 
offering.... i put on it fine fiour mixed with oil and with incense as a meal 
offering.... i put salt on aii of them. And the smell of my offering rose up 
to heaven, vacat ... 

XI ... the mountains and the deserts four... vacaf [Then] i, Noah, 

went out and walked on the earth, through its length and breadth... 
delight on her in their leaves and in their fruit. And aii the land was filled 
with grass and herbs and grain. Then i blessed the Lord of heaven who 
made splendid things. He Is for ever and praise is his. And I repeated 

the blessing on account of his grace for the earth and on account of his 
removing and causing to perish from it all those wtio do violence and 
wicl<edness and lies and on account of his rescuing the righteous man 
... vacat [God] was revealed to me and [the Lord] of heaven spoke to 
me and said to me: 'Do not fear, Noah. I shall be with you and with your 
sons who will be like you for ever... of the earth and rule over them... 
and over its deserts and its mountains and all that are on them. And 
behold, I give all of it to you and to your sons to eat the green things 
and the grass of ttie earth. But you shall not eat any blood. Your fear 
and awe... forever.'... 

XII ... in the mountains of Ararat (HWRRT). And afterwards I 
descended... I and my sons and the sons [of my sons] ... for the 
destruction was great on the earth... after the Flood. To my first son 
[Shem] was born, to begin with, a son, Arpachshad, two years after the 
Flood. [And] all the sons of Shem, all of them, [were Elajm, and Ashur, 
Arpachshad, Lud and Aram, and five daughters. [And the sons of Ham: 
Kush and MIsraijn and Put and Canaan, and seven daughters. And the 
sons of Japhet: Gomer and Magog and Media and Yavan [and Tu]bal 
and Mashok and Tiras, and four daughters. [And] I began, I and all my 
sons, to fill the land and I planted a big vineyard on Mount Lubar and in 
the fourth year it produced wine for me ... [And] when the first festival 
c[ame], on the first day of the first festival in the ... month... I opened this 
jar (?) and I began to drink on the first day of the fifth year ... On this day 
I summoned my sons, my grandsons and all our wives and their 
daughters, and we assembled together and we went... and I blessed 
the Lord of heaven, the Most High God, the Great Holy One who saved 
us from perdition... 

XIII... they were cutting gold and silver and stones and clay and 
taking part of them for themselves. I saw the gold and the silver ... iron, 
and they cut down every tree and took some for themselves. I saw the 
sun and the moon and the stars cutting and taking some for 
themselves. ... I turned to see the olive tree and behold, the olive tree 
was rising upwards and for many hours... many leaves... appeared in 
them. I observed this olive tree and beheld the abundance of its 
leaves... they tied to it. And I was greatly amazed by this olive tree and 
its leaves. I was amazed... the four winds of heaven were blowing 

powerfully and they damaged this olive tree, breaking off its branches 
and smashing them. First [came] the westerly [wind] and struck it, and 
shook off its leaves and fruit, and scattered them in every direction. 

XIV... listen and fiear! You are the great cedar... standing before you 

in a dream on the top of mountains truth. The willow that springs 

from it and rises towards tfie heigfrts (these are) three sons... And that 
which you did see, (namely that) tfie first willow caught the stump of the 
cedar... and the wood from it ... will not separate from you all ite days. 
And among Its posterity... will be called... will spring a rigtiteous plant... 
will stand for ever. And that which you did see, (namely that) the willow 
caught the stump [of the cedar] ... 

... the last willow... vacat... part of their branch entered (got entangled 
with?) the branch of the first (willow), two sons... And that which you did 
see, (namely that) part of their branch entered ttie brarxih of the first... I 
explained to him the mystery... 

XV ... And that you did see all of them ... they will go around, the 
majority of them will be wicked. And that which you did see, (namely 
that) a man came from the south of the land, with a sickle in his hand, 
and fire with him ... who will come from the south of the land ...And they 
will cast wickedness on the fire, all ... And he shall come between 

... Four angels ... between all the nations. And all of them will worship 
and be confounded ... I will explain to you all, in truth. And thus it is 
written concerning you. And I, Noah, awoke from my sleep and the sun 

XVI ... until the river Tina ... and all the land of the north, all of it, until it 
reaches ... And this boundary passes by the waters of the Great Sea 
as far as ... divided by lot to Japhet and his sons to inherit as an 
eternal inheritance, i/acaf The second lot came to Shem to inherit, he 
and his sons, as an eternal inheritance ... the waters of the river Tina ... 
as far as the river Tina ... to the great Sea of Salt. And this boundary 
goes as a spring from this bay ... to the east 

XVII ...And Shem, my son, divided (his inheritance) among his sons. 
And the first (lot) fell to Elam in the north, by the waters of the river 
Tigris as far as the Red Sea, whose source is in the north, and it turns 
to the west to Assyria as far as the Tigris ... And after it to Aram, the 

land between the two rivers, as far as the top of the mountain of Ashur 
... [To] ... fell this IWount of the Ox and the portion stretched and went 
westwards as far as IVIagog ... east in the north ... this bay which is at 
the head of three portions by this sea to Arpachshad to the boundary 
that turns towards the south, all the land watered by the Euphrates, and 
all ... all the valleys and plains that are between ttiem, and the Island 
that Is in the middle of the bay ... to the sons of Gomer ... and Amana 
as far as the Euphrates ... the portion that his father Noah divided and 
gave him. vacatJaphet divided (his Inheritance) between his sons. He 
gave the first (lot) to Gomer in the north as far as the river Tina, and 
afterwards to Magog, and aflen/vards to Media, and afterwards to 
Yavan (the Greeks), all the Islands that are by Lydla. And (the lot) which 
Is between the bay of Lydla and the second bay, (he gave) to Tubal ... 
In the land. And to Meshek the sea ... to Tlras ... which is by ttie portion 
of the sons of Ham ... vacat ... 
XVIII ... 

XIX ... And I said, 'Thou art until now you have not come to the 

Holy Mountain.' 

And I (Abram) departed ... and I travelled towards the south ... until I 
came to Hebron [at the time when Hebron] was being built; and I dwelt 
there [two years]. 

Now there was famine In all this land, and hearing that there was 
prosperity In Egypt I went ... to tine land of Egypt ... I [came to] tine river 
Karmon, one of tlie branches of the River (Nile) ... and I crossed the 
seven branches of the River ... We passed tlnrough our land and 
entered the land of the sons of Ham, the land of Egypt. 

And on the night of our entry Into Egypt, I, Abram, dreamt a dream; 
[and behold], I saw in my dream a cedar tree and a palm tree ... men 
came and tliey sought to cut down the cedar tree and to pull up Its 
roots, leaving the palm tree (standing) alone. But the paim tree cried 
out saying, 'Do not cut down this cedar tree, for cursed be he who shall 
fell [It].' And the cedar tree was spared because of the palm tree and 
[was] not felled. 

And during the night I woke from my dream, and I said to Saral my 
wife, 'I have dreamt a dream ... [and I am] fearful [because of] this 
dream.' Stie said to me, 'Tell me your dream that I may know it' So I 

began to tell her this dream ... [the interpretation] of the dream that 
they will seel< to kill me, but will spare you ... [Say to them] of me, "He is 
my brother", and because of you I shall live, and because of you my life 
shall be saved ... ' 

And Sarai wept that night on account of my words ... 

Then we journeyed towards Zoan, I and Sarai ... by her life that none 
should see her ... 

And whien those five years had passed, three men from among the 
princes of Egypt [came at the command] of Pharaoh of Zoan to inquire 
after [my] business and after my wife and they gave ... goodness, 
wisdom, and truth. And I exclaimed before them ... because of the 
famine ... And they came to ascertain ... with much food and drink ... 
the wine ... 

(During the party, the Egyptians must have seen Sarai, and on their 
return they praised her to the king.) 
XX and beautiful is her face! How ... fine are the hairs of her 

head! How lovely are her eyes! How desirable her nose and all the 
radiance of her countenance ... How fair are her breasts and how 
beautiful all her whiteness! How pleasing are her arms and how perfect 
her hands, and how [desirable] all the appearance of her hands! How 
fair are her palms and how long and slender are her fingers! How 
comely are her feet, how perfect her thighs! No virgin or bride led into 
the marriage chamber is more beautiful than she; she is fairer than all 
other women. Truly her beauty is greater than theirs. Yet together with 
all this grace she possesses abundant wisdom, so that whatever she 
does is perfect (?).' When the king heard the words of Harkenosh and 
his two companions, for all three spoke as with one voice, he desired 
her greatly and sent out at once to take her. And seeing her, he was 
amazed by all her beauty and took her to be his wife, but me he sought 
to kill. Sarai said to the king, 'He Is my brother,' that 1 might benefit 
from her, and I, Abram, was spared because of her and I was not slain. 

And I, Abram, wept aloud that night, I and my nephew Lot, because 
Sarai had been taken from me by force. I prayed that night and I 
begged and implored, and I said in my sorrow while my tears ran 
down: 'Blessed art Thou, O Most High God, Lord of all the worlds. 
Thou who art Lord and king of all things and who rulest over all the 

kings of the earth and judgest them all! I cry now before Thee, my Lord, 
against Pharaoh of Zoan the l<ing of Egypt, because of my wife who 
has been tal<en from me by force. Judge him for me that I may see Thy 
mighty hand raised against him and against aii his tK>usehold, and that 
he may not be abie to defiie my wife this nigfit (separating her) from 
me, and that they may l<now Thee, my Lord, that Thou art Lord of all the 
i<ings of the earth.' And i wept and was sorrowful. 

And during that night the iVIost High God sent a spirit to scourge him, 
an evil spirit to all his household; and It scourged him and aii his 
household. And tie was unable to approach tier, and although he was 
with her for two years, he knew her not. 

At the end of those two years the scourges and afflictions grew 
greater and more grievous upon him and aii his housetiold, so tie sent 
for aii [the sages] of Egypt, for all the magicians, together with all the 
healers of Egypt, that they mlgtit heal him and aii his tiousetiold of this 
scourge. But not one healer or magician or sage could stay to cure 
him, for the spirit scourged them aii and they fled. 

Then Harkenosh came to me, beseeching me to go to the king and 
to pray for him and to lay my hands upon him that he might live, for the 
king had dreamt a dream ... But Lot said to him, 'Abram my uncle 
cannot pray for the king while Saral his wife is with him. Go, therefore, 
and tell the king to restore his wife to her husband; then he will pray for 
him and he shall live.' 

When Harkenosh had heard the words of Lot, he went to the king 
and said, 'All these scourges and afflictions with which my lord the king 
is scourged and afflicted are because of Sarai the wife of Abram. Let 
Sarai be restored to Abram her husband, and this scourge arxJ the 
spirit of festering shall vanish from you.' 

And he called me and said, 'What have you done to me with regard 
to [Sarai]? You said to me, She is my sister, whereas she is your wife; 
and 1 took her to be my wife. Behold your wife who is with me; depart 
and go hence from all the land of Egypt! And now pray for me and my 
house that this evil spirit may be expelled from it.' 

So I prayed [for him] ... and 1 laid my hands on his [head]; and the 
scourge departed from him and the evil [spirit] was expelled [from him], 
and he lived. And the king rose to tell me ... and the king swore an oath 

to me that ... and the king gave her much [silver and gold] and much 
raiment of fine linen and purple ...And Hagaralso ... and he appointed 
men to lead [me] out [of all the land of Egypt]. And I, Abram, departed 
with very great flocks and with silver and gold, and I went up from 
[Egypt] together with my nephew [Lot]. Lot had great flocks also, and 
he took a wife for himself from among [the daughters of Egypt. 

I pitched my camp] XXI [in] every place in which I had formerly 
camped until I came to Bettiel, the place wtiere I had built an altar. And 
I built a second altar and laid on it a sacrifice, and an offering to the 
Most High God. And there I called on the name of the Lord of worlds 
and praised the Name of God and blessed God, and I gave thanks 
before God for all the riches and favours which He had bestowed on 
me. For He had dealt kindly towards me and had led me back in 
peace into this land. After that day Lot departed from me on account 
of the deeds of our shepherds. He went away and settled in the valley 
of ttie Jordan, together with all his flocks; and I myself added more to 
them. He kept his sheep and journeyed as far as Sodom, and he 
bought a house for himself in Sodom and dwelt in it But I dwelt on the 
mountain of Bethel and it grieved me that my nephew Lot had 
departed from me. And God appeared to me in a vision at night and 
said to me, 'Go to Ramath Hazor which is north of Bethel, the place 
where you dwell, and lift up your eyes and look to the east and to the 
west and to the south and to the north; and behold all this land which I 
give to you and your seed for ever.' 

The next morning, I went up to Ramath Hazor and from that high 
place I beheld the land from the River of Egypt to Lebanon and Senir, 
and from the Great Sea to Hauran, and all the land of Gebal as far as 
Kadesh, and all the Great Desert to the east of Hauran and Senir as 
far as the Euphrates. And He said to me, 'I will give all this land to your 
seed and they shall possess it for ever And I will multiply your seed 
like the dust of the earth which no man can number; neither shall any 
man number your seed. Rise and go! Behold the length and breadth of 
the land, for it is yours; and after you, I will give it to your seed for ever.' 

And I, Abram, departed to travel about and see the land. I began my 
journey at the river Glhon and travelled along the coast of the Sea until I 
came to the IVlountain of the Bull (Taurus). Then I travelled from the 

coast of the Great Salt Sea and journeyed towards the east by the 
Mountain of the Bull, across the breadth of thie land, until I came to the 
river Euphrates. I journeyed along the Euphrates until I came to the Red 
Sea (Persian Gulf) in the east, and I travelled along the coast of the 
Red Sea until I came to the tongue of the Sea of Reeds (the modern 
Red Sea) which flows out from the Red Sea. Then I pursued my way In 
the south until I came to the river Glhon, and returning, I came to my 
house In peace and found all things prosperous there. I went to dwell at 
the Oaks of Mamre, which is at Hebron, north-east of Hebron; and I 
built an altar there, and laid on it a sacrifice and an oblation to the Most 
High God. I ate and drank there, I and all the men of my household, and 
I sent for Mamre, Ornam and Eshkol, the three Amorlte brothers, my 
friends, and they ate and drank with me. 

Before these days, Kedorlaomer king of Elam had set out with 
Amrafel king of Babylon, Ariok king of Kaptok, and "Tidal king of the 
nations which He between the rivers; and they had waged war against 
Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king ofAdmah, 
Shemlabad king of Zebolm, and against the king of Bela. All these had 
made ready for battle in the valley of Siddim, and the king of Elam and 
the other kings with him had prevailed over the king of Sodom and his 
companions and had imposed a tribute upon them. 

For twelve years they had paid their tribute to the king of Eiam, but in 
the thirteenth year they rebelled against him. And in the fourteenth year, 
the king of Elam placed himself at the head of aii his allies and went up 
by the Way of the Wilderness; and they smote and pillaged from the 
river Euphrates onward. They smote the Refaim who were at Ashteroth 
Karnalm, the Zumzamim who were at Ammon, the Emim [who were at] 
Shaveh ha-Keriyyoth, and the Horites who were In the mountains of 
Gebal, until they came to El Paran which is in the Wildemess. Arxl they 
returned ... at Hazazon Tamar. 

The king of Sodom went out to meet them, together with the king [of 
Gomorrah], the king ofAdmah, the king of Zebolm, and the king of 
Bela, [and they fought] a battle in the vaiiey [of Siddim] against 
Kedorlaomer [king of Elam and the kings] who were with him. But the 
king of Sodom was vanquished and fled, and the king of Gomorrah fell 
Into the pits ... [And] the king of Elam [carried off] all the riches of 

Sodom and [Gomorrah] ... and they took Lot the nephew XXII of Abram 
who dwelt with them in Sodom, together with ail his possessions. 

Now one of the shepherds of the flocks which Abram had given to 
Lot escaped from captivity and came to Abram; at that time Abram 
dwelt In Hebron. He told him that Lot his nephew had been taken, 
together with all his possessions, but that he had not been siain and 
that the kings had gone by ttie Way of the Great Valley (of the Jordan) 
in the direction of their land, taking captives and plundering and 
smiting and slaying, arKi that they were joumeying towards ttie land of 

Abram wept because of Lot his nephew. Then he braced himself; he 
rose up and chose from among his servants three hundred and 
eighteen flghting men trained for war, and Ornam and Eshkol and 
Mamre went with him also. He pursued them until he came to Dan, and 
came on them while ttiey were camped in the valley of Dan. He feii on 
them at night from four sides and during the night he slew them; he 
crushed them and put them to flight, and aii of them fled before him until 
they came to Helbon which is north of Damascus. He rescued from 
them all their captives, and all their booty and possessions. He also 
delivered Lot his nephew, together with all his possessions, and he 
brought back all the captives which they had taken. 

When the king of Sodom learned that Abram had brought back all 
the captives and all the booty, he came out to meet him; and he went to 
Salem, which is Jerusalem. 

Abram camped in the valley of Shaveh, which is the valley of the 
king, the valley of Beth-ha-Kerem; and Melchizedek king of Salem 
brought out food and drink to Abram and to all the men who were with 
him. He was the Priest of the IVlost High God. And he blessed Abram 
and said, 'Blessed be Abram by the Most High God, Lord of heaven 
and earth! And blessed be the Most High God who has delivered your 
enemies into your hand!' And Abram gave him the tithe of all the 
possessions of the king of Elam and his companions. 

Then the king of Sodom approached and said to Abram, 'My lord 
Abram, give me the souls which are mine, which you have delivered 
from the king of Elam and taken captive, arxJ you may tiave all the 

Then said Abram to the king of Sodom, 'I raise my hand this day to 
the IWost High God, Lord of heaven and earth! I will take nothing of 
yours, not even a shoe-lace or shoe-strap, lest you say, Abram's riches 
come from my possessions! I will take rxjthing but that which the young 
men with me have eaten already, and the portion of the three men who 
have come with me. They shall decide whether they will give you their 
portion.' ArKi Abram returned all the possessions and all the captives 
and gave them to the king of Sodom; he freed all the captives from this 
land who were with him, and sent them all back. 

After these things, God appeared to Abram in a vision and said to 
him, 'Behold, ten years have passed since you departed from Haran. 
For two years you dwelt here and you spent seven years in Egypt, and 
one year has passed since you returned from Egypt. And now examine 
and count all you have, and see how it has grown to be double that 
which came out with you from Haran. And now do not fear, I am with 
you; I am your help and your strength. I am a shield above you and a 
mighty safeguard round about you. Your wealth and possessions shall 
multiply greatly.' But Abram said, 'My Lord God, I have great wealth 
and possessions but what good shall they do to me? I shall die naked; 
childless shall I go hence. A child from my household shall inherit from 
me. Eliezerson 

... shall inherit from me.' And He said to him, 'He shall not be your 
heir, but one who shall spring [from your body shall inherit from you].' 

Genesis Commentaries (4Q252 — 254a) 

From this non-continuous paraphrase of Genesis, four sections are 
reproduced here, two of which are of sectarian inspiration. The 
composition of the first fragment attempts to adapt the chronology of 
the biblical Flood story to the solar calendar of the Qumran 
Community Along more general lines, it seeks also to explain certain 
peculiarities of the scriptural text, e.g., why despite Ham's disrespect 
to his father, it was not he, but his son Canaan, wfra was cursed by 
Noah. Ttie exegesis attested in this section is distinct from the pesber, 

and resembles partly the style of the 'rewritten Bible' such as the 
Genesis Apocryphon, and partly the 'plain', or peshat, interpretation of 
the rabbis. 

The subject of the second excerpt is the blessing of Judah, i.e. the 
tribe in which David originated. The sectarian commentator (see the 
mention of the 'men of the Community in line 5) emphasizes that the 
royal power will belong for ever to ttie descerxJants of David, thereby 
implying tfiat all rwn-Davidic rulers, such as ttie contemporary 
IHasmonaean priest-l<ings, unlawfully occupy the throne. If so, the 
composition best fits to the first half of the first century BCE. Only four 
tiny fragments of 4Q253 are extant. Fr. I mentions ttie arl<. Fr. 3, col. I 
contains a citation from IVIal. iii, 16 — 18. This is ttie only translatable 
excerpt. Fifteen mostly insignificant scraps of 4Q254 correspond partly 
to the Noah story and partly to the blessings of the Patriarchs. Only frs. 
I and 5 can be translated. Fr. I, lines 2 — 4 overlap with 4Q252 ii, 1 .6. 

For Vneeditio phnceps, see G. J. Brooke, DJD, XXII, 185—212, 

4Q252, fr. I (Gen. vi, 3— XV, 17) 

I [In the] four hundred and eightieth year of the life of Noah came their 
end (that of antediluvian mankind). And God said, IVIy spirit shall not 
abide in man for ever and their days shall be determined to be one 
hundred and twenty years (Gen. vi, 3) - until the end of the Flood. And 
the waters of the Flood arrived on the earth in the six hundredth year 
of the life of Noah, in the second month — on the first day of the week 
— on the seventeenth (of the month). On that day all the fountains of 
the great deep burst forth and the wndovvs of the heavens were 
opened. And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights (vi i , 1 1 — 
12) until the twenty-sixth day of the third month, the ffth day of the 
week. And the mters prevailed upon the [eajrth a hundred and fifty 
days (vii, 24) — until the fourteenth day of the seventh month, the third 
day of the week. And at the end of a hundred and fifty days, the mters 
had abated — two days, the fourth and the fifth day and on the sixth 
day - the ark came to rest on the mountains of Hurarat (or: Turarat), 

on the seventeenth day of the seventh month (viii, 3 — 4). And the 
waters [conjtinued to abate until the [tenjth month, the first day of (the 
month) - the fourth day of the week — and the tops of the mountains 
appeared (viii, 5). At the end of forty days — after the tops of the 
mountains had been seen — Noah [op]ened the vindowof the ark 
(vi i i , 6) - on the tenth day of the ele[venth] month. And he sent forth the 
dove to see if Vie veters had subsided (viii, 8), but she did not find a 
resting-place and returned to him to the ark (viii, 9). He mited 
an[other\ seven days and again sent her forth (viii, 10). She came 
back to him wth a plucked olive leaf in her beak {\A \ \, 10 — 11) — [this 
is the twenty-]fourth [day] of the eleventh month, the first day of the 
wee[k. And Noah knewthat the waters had subsided] from the earth 
(viii, II). At the end of another [seven days, he sent forth the dove and 
it did not] return again (viii, 12) — this is the f[irst] day [of the twelfth] 
month, [the fi rst day] of the weel<. At the end of three [weeks after Noah 
had sent forth the dov]e which did not return to him any more, the 
Ma[ters] dried up [from the earth and\ Noah removed the covering of 
the ark and looked, and behold, the face of the ground was dry (viii, 
13). This was the first day of the first month. [And it happened] II in the 
six hundred and first year of the life of Noah, on the seventeenth day 
of the second month that the earth was d/y (vi i i , 1 4) - on the fi rst day of 
the week. On that day A/oa/? vtent forth from the ark (viii, 18) at the end 
of a full year of three hundred and sixty-four days, on the first day of the 
week, on the seven[teenth] of the second month vacat on and six vacaf 
Noah from the ark at the appointed time of a full year vacat And Noah 
awDke from his wne and knew \AJhat his youngest son had done to 
him. And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a slave of slaves shall he be 
to [his] bro[thers] (ix, 24 — 5). But he did not curse Ham but only his 
son, for God had blessed the sons of Noah. And let him dwell In the 
tents ofShem (ix, 27). He gave the land to Abram, his beloved. [Terah] 
was one hundred and for[t]y-five years old when he went forth from Ur 
of the Chaldees and came to Haran (xi,31). Now Ab[ram was 
se]venty years old and for five years Abram dwelt in Haran. And 
afterwards Abram went forth to the land of Canaan. Six[ty-five years] ... 
the heifer and the ram and the go[af\ (xv, 9) ... [the torch of] ] fire vhen 
it pass^ed ovef\ (xv, 17) ... 

(Gen. xxxvi, 12) 

IV Timna v\as the concubine ofEliphaz son of Esau and she bore to 
h\m Amaiek (xxxvi, 12), whom Saul smo[te] as He said to Moses, In 
the last days you wll vipe out the memory of Amaiek from under the 
heaven (Deut. xxv, 19). 

Blessings of Jacob (Gen. xlix, 3) 

Reuben, you are my first-bom, the firstfruit of my strength, pre- 
eminent in pride and pre-eminent in povisr Unstable as water, you 
shall not have pre-eminence; you went up to your fathers bed; you 
have defiled his couch ... (xlix, 3) Its interpretation is that he rebuked 
him because he slept with Bilhah, his concubine, and he said, '[My] 
first-[bom] ... (ibid.) Reuben is the firstfruit 

(Gen. xlix, 10) 

V The sceptre [shall not] depart from the tribe ofJudah ... [xlix, 10]. 
Whenever Israel rules, there shall [not] fail to be a descendant of 
David upon the throne (Jen xxxiii, 17). For the ruler's staff (xlix, 10) is 
the Covenant of kingship, [and the clans] of Israel are the divisions,55 
until the Messiah of Righteousness comes, the Branch of David. For to 
him and his seed is granted the Covenant of kingship over his people 
for everlasting generations which he is to keep... the Law with the men 
of the Community, for... it is the assembly of the men of... 

Genesis Commentary C (4Q254) 

Fr. I (Gen. ix, 24—5) 

... which he says ... on the doors and ... [And Noah awoke from his 
wi ne] and knewvhat [his youngest son had done to him. And he said, 
Cursed be Canaan;] a slave of slaves [shall he be to his brothers] 
(Gen. ix, 24—5). 

Frs. 5—6 (Gen. xlix, 15—17) 

And he bowed [his shoulder to bear and tjecame] a slave [at forced 
labour] (Gen. xlxi, 15). Its interpretation... [Dan shall judge] his 
[peo]ple as on[e] of the tilibes of Israel.] Dan shall be a ser[pent in 
the my, a vip]erby the pa[th that bites] the horse's hee[ls] (Gen. xlix, 
15-17) ... 

Genesis Commentary D (4Q254a) 


[On] the seventeenth of the month... Noah went out of the ark at the 
appointed time year by year ... [a ra]ven and it went out and returned to 
announce to the 1[ast] generations ... before him, for the ra[ven] went 
out and retur[ned] ... 

Commentaries on Isaiahi (4Q 11611 -5, 3Q4) 

Translatable fragments of four commentaries on Isaiah were 
discovered in Cave 4 (4Qplsaa— d = 4Q161— 4). A fifth (4Qplsa^ = 
4QI65) is too mutilated to be rendered into English. The first document 
alludes to the defeat of the Kittim and expounds tfie renowned 
messianic prophecy of tea. xi. It is related to 4Q285 (cf. p. 188). The 
second and tfie third deal with tfie Jewish opponents of the sect. The 

fourth, relying on Isa. liv, identifies the Community as the New 
Jerusalem. They may all be assigned to the first century BCE. A small 
fragment from Cave 3 (3Q4) represents a commentary on Isa. 1, 1, but 
with no continuous text. 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Allegro arxJ A. A. Anderson, DJD, 
V, 11— 30. 


... [and the tallest tre]es [shall be cut down and\ the lofty [shall be 
felled] wth the axe, and Lebanon through a poverful one shall fall (x, 

[Its interpretation concerns the Kit]tim who shall crush the house of 
Israel and the humble ... all the nations and the valiant shall be 
dismayed and [their] he[arts] shall melt. [And that which he said, The 
tallesf[ trees shall be cut down, these are the valiant of the Kit[tim] ... 
[And that which he sajid. The heart of the forest shall be felled wth the 
axe, th[ey] ... for the war of the Kittim. And Lebanon through a 
po[werful one shall fall (x, 34). Its interpretation concerns the] Kittim 
who will be given into the iiarxl of his great one ... when he flees from 
be[fore ls]rael ... vacat 

[And there shall come forth a rod from the stem ofJesseand a 
Branch shall grow out of its roots. And the spirit of the Lord shall rest 
upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of 
counsel and might, the spirit of kno\Medge and of thefearof the Lord. 
And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by 
What his eyes see, or pass sentence by what his ears hear; he shall 
judge the poor righteously and shall pass sentence justly on the 
humble of the earth] (xi, 1 — 3). 

[Interpreted, this concerns the Branch] of David who shall arise at the 
end [of days] ... God will uphold him with [the spirit of might, and will 
give him] a throne of glory and a crown of [holiness] and many- 
coloured garments ... [He will put a sceptre] in his hand and he shall 
rule over all the [nations]. And Magog ... and his sword shall judge [all] 
the peoples. 

And as for that which he said, He shall not [judge by what tils eyes 
see] or pass sentence by vhat tils ears hear interpreted, this means 
that ... [the Priests] ... As they teach him, so wiii he judge; and as they 
order, [so will he pass sentence]. One of the Priests of renown shall go 
out, and garments of... shall be in his hands ... 


[For ten acres of vineyard shall produce only one bath, and a homer 
of seed shall yield but one ephah] (v, 1 0). 

Interpreted, this saying concerns the last days, the devastation of the 
land by sword and famine. At the time of the Visitation of the land there 
shall be Woe to those vho rise early in the morning to run after strong 
drink, to those vJho linger in the evening until wne inflames them. 
They have zither and harp and timbrel and flute and vine at their 
feasts, but they do not regard the work of the Lord or see the deeds of 
His hand. Therefore my people go into exile for want of knowledge, 
and their noblemen die of hunger and their multitude is parched with 
thirst Therefore Hell has widened its gullet and opened its mouth 
beyond measure, and the nobility of Jerusalem and her multitude go 
down, her tumult and he who rejoices in her (v, 11 — 14). 

These are the Scoffers in Jerusalem who have despised the Law/of 
the Lord and scorned the word of the Holy One of Israel. Therefore 
the wrath of the Lord ms kindled against His people. He stretched 
out His hand against them and smote them; the mountains trembled 
and their corpses were like sweepings in the middle of the streets. 
And [His wrath] has not relented for all these things [and His hand is 
stretched out still] (v, 24—5). 

This is the congregation of Scoffers in Jerusalem ... 


Thus said the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, 'You shall be saved by 
returning and resting; your strength shall be in silence and trust 'But 

you would not. You [said], 'No. We will flee upon horses and will ride 
on swft steeds.' Therefore your pursuers shall be speedy also. A 
thousand shall flee at the threat of one; at the threat of five you shall 
flee [till] you are left like a flagstaff on top of a mountain and like a 
signal on top of a hill. Therefore the Lord na/fs to be [gracious to] 
you; therefore He exalts Himself to have mercy on you. For the Lord 
is a God of Justice. How blessed are all those who wait for him! (xxx, 

This saying, referring to the iast days, concerns the congregation of 
those who seel< smooth things in Jerusaiem ... [who despise the] Law 
and do not [trust in God] ... As robbers iie in wait for a man ... they have 
despised [the words of| the Law ... 

O people ofZion [who live in Jerusalem, you shall weep no more. 
At the sound of] your crying [He wll be gracious to you; He wll 
answer you] vJien He [hears it Although the Lord gives you bread of 
oppression and water of distress, your Teacher] shall be hidden [no 
more and your eyes shall see your Teacher] ... (XXX, 19 — 20). 


Behold, I wll set your stones in antimony (iiv, iib). 

[interpreted, this saying concems] ... all Israel is iil<e antimony 
surrounding the eye. 

And I wll lay your foundations wth sapphires (iiv, iiC). 

interpreted, this concerns the Priests and the people who laid the 
foundations of the Council of ttie Community ... the congregation of His 
elect (shall sparkle) lil<e a sapphire among stones. 

[And I will make] all your pinnacles [of agate] (Iiv, 1 2a). 

Interpreted, this corxiems the twelve [chief Priests] who shall 
enlighten by judgement of the Urim and Tummim ... which are absent 
from them, lil<e the sun with all its light, and lil<e the moon ... 

[And all your gates of carbuncles] (liv, 12b). 
Interpreted, this concerns the chiefs of the tribes of Israel... 

Commentaries on Hosea (4Q166 — 7) 

Two fragmentary manuscripts (4Q166 — 7) include exegeses of 
Hosea. In the first, the unfaithful wife is the Jewish people led astray by 
her lovers, the Gentiles. The second refers cryptically to 'the furious 
young lion', mentioned also in the Commentary on Nahum, and to 'the 
last Priest who shall ... strike Ephraim'. 

For the editio princeps, see J. M. Allegro and A. A. Anderson, DJD, 
V, 31— 2. 


II [She knewnot thaf\ it was / vtho gave her [the newwne and oil], \Mio 
lavished [upon her silver] and gold vJiich they [used for Baal] (ii, 8). 

Interpreted, this means that [they ate and] were filled, but they forgot 
God who ... They cast His commandments behind them which He had 
sent [by the hand of] His servants the Prophets, and they listened to 
those who led them astray. They revered them, and in their blindness 
they feared them as though they were gods. 

Therefore I wll take back my com in its time and my vine [in its 
season]. I vill take amy my vool and my flax lest they cover [her 
nakedness]. I wll uncover her shame before the eyes of [her] lovers 
[and] no man shall deliver her from outofmyhand (11, 9 — 10). 

Interpreted, this means that He smote them with hunger and 
nakedness that they might be shamed and disgraced in the sight of the 
nations on which they relied. They will not deliver ttiem from their 

/ w// put an end to her rejoicing, [her feasts], her [nevH moons, her 
Sabbaths, and all her festivals (ii, II). 

Interpreted, this means that [they have rejected the ruling of the Law, 
and have] followed the festivals of the nations. But [their rejoicing shall 
come to an end and] shall be changed into mourning. / wll ravage [her 
vines and her fig trees], ofvihich she said, 'They are my mge [v\hich 
my lovers have given me'.] I wll make of them a thicket and the [vild 
beasts] shall eatthem ... (ii, 12). 


... and your wound shall not be healed (v, 13). 
[Its] in[terpretation concerns] ... the furious young lion ... 

For I wll be like a lion [to E]ph[ra]im [and like a young lion to the 
house ofJudah] (v, 14a). 

[Its interpretation conjcerns the last Priest who shall stretch out his 
hand to strike Ephraim ... 

[/ vill go and come back to my place uri]til they [wif] feel guilty and 
seek my face; in ffieir distress they wll seek me eagerly (v, 15)-lts 
interpretation is that God [has hidjden His face from ... and they did not 
listen ... 


IButthey, like Adam, havebjroken the Covenant <y\, 7). 

[Its] interpretation ... they have forsaken God and walked according 
to the decrees [of the Gentiles] ... 

Commentary on Micah (1Q]14,4Q168) 

Tiny fragments from Cave I (1Q14) represent an exposition of IVlicah. 
Altliough the proptnet's words are intended to castigate both Samaria 
and Jerusalem, the Qumran commentator interprets Samaria as 
alluding to the 'Spouter of Lies', the enemy of the sect, but relates 
Judah and Jerusalem to the Teacher of Righteousness and his 
Community Further fragments of Micah iv, 8 — 12 are given the title 
'Commentary on Micah (?)', in 4Q168 (DJD, V, 36), but since neither 
the word pesher, nor any interpretative material is extant, the 
manuscript may be biblical. 
For the editio princeps, see J. T. Milik, DJD, 1 ,77 — 80. 

[All this is] for the transgression [of Jacob and for the sins of the 
House of Israel. What is the transgression of Jacob?] Is it not 
[Samaria ?And vhat is the high place of Judah ? Is it not Jenjsalem 7 
I vill make of Samaria a ruin in the fields, and of Jenjsalem a 
plantation of vines] (i, 5 — 6). 

Irrterpreted, this concerns the Spouter of Lies [who led the] Simple 

And vtiatis the high place of Judah? [Is it not Jerusalem?] (i, 5). 

[Interpreted, this concerns] the Teacher of Righteousness who 
[expounded the law to] his [Council] and to all who freely pledged 
themselves to join the elect of [God to keep the Law] in the Council of 
the Community, who shall be saved on the Day [of Judgement] ... 

Commentary on Nahum (4Q169) 

Substantial remains of a Nahum Commentary were retrieved from 
Cave 4 {4Q169). They cover parts of chapters i and 11 of the biblical 
book, and the first fourteen verses of chapter III. Their historical 
significance has been discussed in Chapter III (pp. 55 — 62). It is 
worthy of note that the commentator employs not only cryptograms 
(Kittim, furious young lion, etc.), but the actual names of two Greek 

kings (Demetrius and Antiochus). Reference to 'the furious young iion' 
as one who 'hangs men alive' shows that 'hanging', probably a 
synonym for crucifixion, was practised as a form of execution. It is also 
legislated for in the Temple Scroll (LXIV, 6 — 13), where it is the capital 
punishment reserved for traitors. In biblical law, by contrast, only the 
dead body of an executed criminal is to be hanged, ttiat is, displayed 
in public as an example (Deut. xxi, 21 ). 

On palaeographical grounds the manuscript is dated to the second 
half of the first century BCE. 

For the editio phnceps, see J. M. Allegro and A. A. Anderson, DJD, 
V, 371—42. 

Frs. 1—2 

[In v\Jiiriwnd and storm is his my and\ cloud is Uie d[ust of his feet 
(i, 3). Its interpretafion] ... The [whirlwinds and the storm]s are (from) the 
fir[mam]ents of his heaven and of his earth which he has cre[ated]. 

He rebu[kes] the sea and dh[es it up] (i , 4a). 

Its [int]erpretation: the sea is all the K[ittim who are] ... to execut[e] 
judgement against ttiem and destroy them from the face [of the earth,] 
together with [all] their [com]manders wtrase dominion shall be 

[Bashan and] Canvel have withered and the sprout of Lebanon 
withers (i, 4b). Its interpretafion... [will per]ish in it, the summit of 
wickedness for the ... Carmel and to his commanders. Lebanon and 
the sprout of Lebanon are [the priests, the sons of Zadok and the men 
of] their [courK;]il and they shall perish from before... the elect... [a]11 
the inhabitants of the world. 

The mo[untains quake before hini\ and Uie hiils heave and the 
earth [is lifted up] before him, and [the world and all that dwell in it 
Who can stand before his waUi? And viio can arise] against his 
furious anger? (i, 5— 6a). 

[Its] interpretation] 

i [Where is the lions' den and the cave of the young lions?] (ii, ii). 
[interpreted, this concerns] ... a dweiiing-piace for the ungodiy of the 

Whither the lion goes, there is the lion's cub, [vith none to disturb /(] 
(ii, iib). 

[Interpreted, this concerns Deme]trius l<ing of Greece who sought, 
on the counsel of those who seek smooth things, to enter Jerusalem. 
[But God did not permit the city to be delivered] into the hands of the 
kings of Greece, from the time of Antiochus until the coming of the 
rulers of the Kittim. But then she shall be trampled under their feet ... 

The lion tears enough for its cubs and it chokes prey for its 
lionesses (\\, 12a). 

[Interpreted, this] concerns the furious young lion who strikes by 
means of his great men, and by means of the men of his council. 

[And chokes prey for its lionesses; and it fills] its caves [vith prey] 
and its dens wth victims (ii, 12a — b). 

Interpreted, this concerns the furious young lion [who executes 
revenge] on those who seek smooth things and hangs men alive, ... 
formerly in Israel. Because of a man hanged alive on [the] tree, He 
proclaims, 'Behold I am against [you, says the Lord o1 Hosts]. 

[ 7 wll bum up your multitude in smoke], and the sv\ord shall 
devour your young lions. I wll [cut ofl] your prey [from the earth] (ii, i 

[Interpreted] ... your multitude is the bands of his army ... and his 
young lions are ... his prey is the wealth wfiich [the priests] of 
Jerusalem have [amassed], which ... Israel shall be delivered ... 

[And the voice of your messengers shall no more be heard] (11, 13b). 

[Interpreted] II ... his messengers are his envoys wtwse voice shall 

no more be heard among the nations. 

Woe to the city of blood; it is full of lies and rapine (i i i , la — b). 
Interpreted, this is the city of Ephraim, those who seek smooth 
things during the last days, who walk in lies and falsehood. 

The provler is not mnting, noise of vJhip and noise of rattling 
vJieel, prancing horse and jolting chariot, charging horsemen, flame 
and glittering spear, a multitude of the slain and a heap of carcasses. 
There is no end to the corpses; they stumble upon their corpses (ill, 
Ic— 3). 

Interpreted, this concems the dominion of those wfo seek smooth 
things, from the midst of whose assembly the sword of the nations shall 
never be wanting. Captivity, looting, and burning shall be among them, 
and exile out of dread for the enemy. A multitude of guilty corpses shall 
fall in their days; there shall be no erKi to the sum of their slain. They 
shall also stumble upon their body of flesh because of their guilty 

Because of the many harlotries of the vsll-favoured harlot, the 
mistress of seduction, she vho sells nations through her harlotries 
and families through her seductions (ill, 4). 

Interpreted, this concerns those who lead Ephraim astray, who lead 
many astray through their false teaching, their lying tongue, and 
deceitful lips - kings, princes, priests, and people, together with the 
stranger who joins them. Cities and families shall perish through their 
counsel; honourable men and rulers shall fall through their tongue's 

Behold, I am against you - oracle of the Lord of Hosts - and you wll 
lift up your skirts to your face and expose your nakedness to the 
nations and your shame to the kingdoms (iii, 5). 

Interpreted ... cities of the east. For the skirts are ... Ill and the 
nations shall ... among them their filthy idols. 

/ wll cast filth upon you and treat you vith contempt and render you 
despicable, so that all v\Jio look upon you shall flee from you (iii, 6 — 

Interpreted, this concerns those who seek smooth things, whose evil 
deeds shall be uncovered to all Israel at the end of time. Many shall 
understand their iniquity and treat them with contempt because of their 
guilty presumption. When the glory of Judah shall arise, the simple of 
Ephraim shall flee from their assembly; they shall abandon those who 
lead them astray and shall join Israel. 

They shall say, Nineveh is laid veste; vto shall grieve over her? 
Whence shall I seek comforters for you? (iii, 7b). 

Interpreted, this concerns those who seek smooth things, whose 
council shall perish and whose congregation shall be dispersed. They 
shall lead the assembly astray no more, and the simple sliall support 
their council no more. 

Are you better than /Amon which lay among the rivers? (iii, 8a). 
Interpreted, Amon is Manasseh, and the rivers are the great men of 
Manasseh, the honourable men of.. 

Which Mas surrounded by mters, \/\hose rampart i/ias the sea and 
vJiose mils were mters? (iii, 8b). 
Interpreted, these are her valiant men, her almighty warriors. 

Ethiopia [and Egypf\ were her [limitless] strength (iii, 9a). 
[Interpreted] ... 

[Put and the Libyans mre your helpers] (iii, 9b). 
IV Interpreted, these are the wicked of [Judah], the House of 
Separation, who joined Manasseh. 

Yet she was exiled; she vent into captivity. Her children were 

crushed at the top of all the streets. They cast lots for her honourable 
men, and all her great men were bound wth chains (i i i , 1 0). 

Interpreted, this concerns Manasseh in tiie final age, wliose 
l<ingdom shall be brought low by [Israel ... ] his wives, his children, and 
his little ones shall go into captivity. His migtity men and honourable 
men [shall perish] by the sword. 

[You shall be drunk] and shall be stupefied (ill, lla). 
Interpreted, this concerns the wicked of E[phraim ... ] wfxjse cup 
shall come after Manasseh ... 

[You shall also seek] refuge in the city because of the enemy (iii, i 
lb). Inter[preted, this concerns ... ] their enemies in the city ... 

[All your strongholds shall be] like tig trees wth nevJy ripe figs (iii, 

Commentary on Habakkuk (IQpHab) 

This well-preserved and detailed exposition of the first two chapters of 
the Book of Habakkuk comes from Cave I and was published in 1950 
(M. Burrows, The Dead Sea Scrolls of St Mark's Monastery, I, New 
Haven, 1950, pis. LV— LXI). 

The palaeographical dating of the manuscript (30 — 1 BCE) has 
been confirmed by radiocarbon tests (120 — 5 BCE; cf. above, pp. 12 
— 13). The Habakkuk Commentary is one of tfie main sources for the 
study of Qumran origins, as well as Essene Bible exegesis and the 
sect's theology regarding prophecy. The historical and doctrinal 
aspects of the document are analysed in Chapters III and IV. 

I [Oracle of Habakkuk the prophet How long, O Lord, shall I cry] for 
help and Thou wit not [hear] ? (i , 1 — 2). 
[Interpreted, this concerns the beginning] of the [final] generation ... 

[Orshoutto Thee 'Violence', and Thou vvlt not deliver?] (i, 2b) 

[Why dost Thou cause me to see iniquity and to look upon 
trouble? Desolation and violence are before me] (i, 3). 
... God with oppression and unfaiWuiness ... tliey rob riclies. 

[There is quarrelling and contention] (i, 3b). 

So the lawis v\eak [and justice never goes forth] (i , 4a-b). 
[interpreted] this concerns those who have despised the Law of God 

[For the viicked encompasses] the righteous (i, 4c). 
[The wicked is the Wicked Priest, and the righteous] is the Teacher 
of Righteousness... 
[So] justice goes forth [per\/erted] (i, 4d). ... 

[Behold the nations and see, marvel and be astonished; for I 
accomplish a deed in your days, but you vill not believe it vhen] II 

[interpreted, this concerns] those who were unfaithful together with 
the Liar, in that they [did] not [listen to the word received by] the 
Teacher of Righteousness from the mouth of God. And it concerns the 
unfaithful of the New [Covenant] in that they have not believed in the 
Covenant of God [and have profaned] His holy Name. And likewise, 
this saying is to be interpreted [as concerning those who] will be 
unfaithful at the end of days. They, the men of violence and the 
breakers of the Covenant, will not believe when they hear all that [is to 
happen to] the final generation from the Priest [in whose heart] God set 
[understanding] that he might interpret all the words of His servants the 
Prophets, through whom He foretold all that would happen to His 
people and [His land]. 

For behold, I rouse the Chaldeans, that [bitter and hasty] nation (1, 


Interpreted, this concerns the Kittim [who are] quick and vaiiant in 
war, causing many to perish. [Aii the worid shaii faii] under the dominion 
of the Kittim, and the [wicked ... ] they shall not believe in the laws of 
[God ... ] 

[Who march through the breadth of the eartii to take possession of 
dviellings vJiich are not their owt\ (i, 6b). 

... ill they shall march across the plain, smiting and plundering the 
cities of the earth. For it is as He said, To take possession of 
dwellings which are not their own. 

They are fearsome andtenible; their justice and grandeur proceed 
from themselves (1, 7). 

Interpreted, this concerns the Kittim who inspire all the nations with 
fear [and dread]. All their evil plotting is done with intention and they 
deal with all the nations in cunning and guile. 

Their horses are smifter than leopards and fleeter than evening 
WDlves. Their horses step formrd proudly and spread their wngs; 
they fly from afar like an eagle avid to devour All of them come for 
violence; the look on their faces is like the east wnd (i, 8 — 9a). 

[Interpreted, this] concerns the Kittim who trample the earth with their 
horses and beasts. They come from afar, from the islands of the sea, 
to devour all the peoples like an eagle which cannot be satisfied, and 
they address [all the peoples] with anger and [wrath and fury] and 
indignation. For it is as He said. The look on ^eir faces is like the 
east wnd. 

[They heap up] captives [like sand] (1, 9b). 

IV They scoff [at kings], and princes are their laughing-stock {\, 10a). 

Interpreted, this means that they mock the great and despise the 
venerable; they ridicule kings and princes and scoff at the mighty host. 

They laugh